Breckenridge Creative Arts adds new Street Arts Festival to Fourth of July lineup
If you go
What: Breckenridge Creative Arts’ inaugural Street Arts Festival
When: 3-8 p.m. Friday, July 3; noon to 4 p.m. Saturday, July 4; and 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday, July 5
Where: Breckenridge Arts District campus, located on the corner of Washington Avenue and Ridge Street, in downtown Breckenridge
More information: Visit www.breckcreate.org for a full schedule of Street Arts Festival events and related workshops
Street Arts Festival schedule
Friday, July 3
3 p.m. — 3D pavement drawings and sidewalk illusion, with chalk artists Chris Carlson, Naomi Haverland and Bryce Widom
3 p.m. — Graffiti art, with graffiti artists Chuck “Emit,” James “East” Foster, Joe Suta and Satyr
6 p.m. to midnight — LateNite @ the District, with music from Leon Joseph Littlebird and Todo Mundo and a screening of “E.T.: The Extra Terrestrial”
Saturday, July 4
Noon — Chalk art contest, designed for children, teens and adults, with cash prizes
Noon to 4 p.m. — Festival artists continue work on their installations
1-3 p.m. — Kids’ graffiti workshop, Old Masonic Hall
Sunday, July 5
11 a.m. to 3 p.m. — Graffiti and chalk art installations on display
Breckenridge Creative Arts will introduce its inaugural Street Arts Festival to the lineup of Fourth of July weekend activities in Breckenridge, transforming downtown sidewalks, streets and plazas into giant concrete canvases. This celebration of street, pavement and graffiti arts takes place from Friday, July 3, through Sunday, July 5, on the Breckenridge Arts District campus, located on the corner of Washington Avenue and Ridge Street in downtown Breckenridge.
Building on the success of past years’ chalk art contest held on the Fourth of July on Washington Avenue, the Street Arts Festival will continue to host the popular holiday contest, while also presenting some of the region’s best muralists, painters and graffiti artists in a weekend of chalk art and temporary graffiti installations. In addition, themed workshops will be held on the Arts District campus, as the three-day festival showcases the art of street painting and graffiti work through innovative uses of chalk design, pavement illusion and spray-can technique.
“Street-art disciplines have really started to come into their own on the international scene,” said Robb Woulfe, CEO of Breckenridge Creative Arts. “Sidewalk chalk paintings, in particular, are not often thought to be a high art, but drawing with chalk is nostalgic and can bring a community together. We think our inaugural festival will provide a great opportunity for our guests to both creatively express themselves, as well as marvel at some of the incredible designs of our featured artists.”
Regional artists Emit, James “East” Foster, Joe Suta and Satyr will be featured at the festival with their groundbreaking graffiti work, as well as Bryce Widom from Boulder, an accomplished chalk and oil painter; Naomi Haverland, from Denver, who has won multiple awards at the Denver Chalk Art Festival, including People’s Choice; and Chris Carlson, also from Denver, who creates anamorphic 3D chalk art.
“When viewed from one specific viewing point, the drawing will look 3D,” Carlson said. “It will look like the drawing is coming off of the ground or plummeting into the ground. The further you move away from the viewing point, the more distorted my art becomes. From the side, it looks very strange and stretched out.”
Carlson has been a chalk artist for about five years, he said, and his themes generally revolve around subjects from his childhood, from old-school video games to toys, creating a feeling of nostalgia that’s fun for him to create and fun for viewers to interact with. He starts each piece with a sketch, brainstorming a concept that he wants to convey and figuring out where everything will fall on the pavement.
“It’s kind of a time crunch,” he said. “When I get there, I want to have everything laid out and get the drawing down and render everything, so I can get it looking as good as I can in the two-day window.”
Many people have only experienced Carlson’s style of chalk art through photos on the Internet, almost all of which are taken from the perfect angle to show the art’s 3D effect. Carlson will have that sweet spot labeled on the ground for prime viewing, but his work can also be seen from other angles.
“You can see it from the side and off angles, which is something you don’t get to experience when you see the pictures online,” he said. “Most people have experienced these but not in person. They get to see behind the curtain, experience the secret. It’s really cool to see someone down there creating the artwork in front of you.
“With a medium like chalk, everyone is familiar with it, but not everyone has put in the time to get to the level of chalk creation that we do. You can see someone who took it too seriously and learned how to do it really well.”
Experience the festival
Artists will begin work on their temporary chalk and graffiti installations on Friday, July 3, at 4 p.m. and will continue working through that evening. Starting at 6 p.m. that night, the Street Arts Festival will be accompanied by the second installment of the LateNite @ the District series, with music from Leon Joseph Littlebird at 6 p.m. and headliner Todo Mundo at 8 p.m. and a free screening of the Steven Spielberg classic “E.T.: The Extra Terrestrial” at 10 p.m.
The festival artists will continue work on their installations from noon to 4 p.m. Saturday, July 4, and the installations will remain on display through Sunday, July 5. The chalk art contest, designed for children, teens and adults with cash prizes, starts on Saturday, July 4 at noon; there will also be a kids’ graffiti workshop in Old Masonic Hall on Saturday, July 4, from 1 to 3 p.m.
For more information on the inaugural Street Arts Festival and other events and workshops presented by Breckenridge Creative Arts, visit breckcreate.org.
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