The Sarasota Chalk Festival, November 11-14 ,will display more 3D-illusion pavement paintings than any other place in the history of the art form. The artists use road surface as their canvas and chalk as their medium making the ground appear to dip inward or rise above. The festival showcases pavement artists and the ephemeral “museum in motion” they create, but it is the attendees – those watching – who are the essential part of this performance art.
Founder Denise Kowal explains, “It’s a paradigm shift in the way we experience fine art. It brings transparency to how a creative idea, in an artist’s mind, becomes a reality in the physical world, humanizing the artwork, its creators, and viewers.”
Expanding a 500-year Italian tradition as a 2D religious art form, the festival is a contemporary social phenomenon, hosting almost all the world-renown pavement artists such as Kurt Wenner, Edgar Mueller, Leon Keer, and Julie Kirk-Purcell.
Wenner invented the 3D illusion pavement art form in the 1980’s, and after a 15- year hiatus doing primarily corporate work, Kowal drew him back to festivals. Muller premiered illuminating paints into his 3D illusion in 2010 and Leon Keer premiered augmented reality in 2011. Kirk-Purcell, one of the first 3D pavement artists, led a team securing a world-record at the 2014 festival.
Cuboliquido, from Italy, remarks, “Many of us are ‘famous’ thanks to the Chalk Festival. It was and is a kickoff to make more viral and popular both this kind of art and many artists, too. It changed the way to make a festival that had never been seen before.” It is the first international pavement art festival in the USA.
It is among the world’s most “intelligent” travel destinations, according to the NYTimes blog, In Transit, and voted the best event in Sarasota County 5 years in a row. The Chalk Festival is managed by a small 501c3 nonprofit that is 100% volunteer with only three board members. It receives over 1,000 artist applications yearly and raises funding for roughly 250 out-of-town artists yearly, while welcoming anyone to participate.
Kowal remarks, “Even though these paintings will not last, we hope the heartfelt message, LOVE & PEACE, will form lasting memories that those who attend will help us spread worldwide.”
SOURCE Sarasota Chalk Festival