Tuesday, September 28, 2010
This past weekend, we checked out the city’s first annual Via Colori street art festival, an event that brought together artists and performers in a weekend devoted to creating chalk artwork on the street. Unlike most art exhibits, this event focuses on the process, with visitors getting to watch the artists in action. With a slate of performers scheduled on two stages throughout two days, including a rock band, jazz trio, acoustic singers, a magician, and the Rappahannock Pops Orchestra, plus a number of food vendors, the festival was a lively celebration of arts in the community. The event was a fundraiser for the Fredericksburg Arts Commission, with donors paying a fee to sponsor an artist’s square.
Featured artist Curtis Goldstein at work on Saturday morning...
and here is his work at the end of the day:
Many artists used a grid system to enlarge their artwork from a small sketch to street-size:
Some artists worked more loosely:
I love this happy cow:
There were several works that included the Rappahannock River train trestle:
Despite a great start on Saturday, the festival was cut short by rain on Sunday morning, and the rest of the event cancelled. But by midday, the sun was shining, so we headed back downtown to see if any of the artists had returned to finish their work. We were happy to find lots of folks walking around looking at the rain-washed, but still visible artwork, and several artists back at work on their squares.
Signature artist Gabriel Pons returned on Sunday to finish his large-scale piece:
I'm sorry the artist didn't get to finish this version of Vermeer's "Girl with a Pearl Earring." It's striking nonetheless.
The rain couldn't diminish the beauty of this piece:
I’m hoping Via Colori catches on, with greater attendance, and more participants and sponsorship each year. I’m also hoping next year brings drier weather.