WELL DONE RARE VISIONS!
I still haven't exhausted my discoveries from Folk Fest. I was completely surprised to see the folks from Rare Visions and Roadside Revelations, a PBS series that is produced in Kansas City. Search your local PBS listings to see if it's playing in your area. If it's not, you can order DVDs of the episodes. For the last ten years, Randy, Mike, and the intrepid Don the Cameraman have been braving the highways and byways of America in their minivan, pursuing the country's most unique visionary artists. After seeing my first episode of the show, I made this post about the headquarters of Longaberger Baskets in Newark, Ohio.
So far, they've covered thirty states, which is well documented in, what I can only describe as THE BEST JUSTIFICATION FOR THE INTERNET SO FAR: Their interactive FLASH map of the United States. You can scour the visionary artists in your area, get directions, and even find out which episode they appeared in. When I checked my hometown (of Lincoln, NE) I found a Vietnamese artist who makes gigantic sculptures out of car bumpers. There are too many artists to list around Athens and Atlanta. The Southeast episode is being edited even as I type this. I forgot to mention that they have a book, too! It contains many of the tasty visionaries from the TV show. Do you live in the Northeast or Western United States? You'd better start lobbying them for the inclusion of your favorite weirdities. Oh....their mascot is the world's largest ball of 3/4" videotape. Boo Ya!