WAVE art festival makes a splash in Breckenridge next week with interactive installations | SummitDaily.com

WAVE art festival makes a splash in Breckenridge next week with interactive installations


What: WAVE: Light + Water + Sound

Where: Blue River Plaza, Arts District campus, Riverwalk Center, Ridge Street Arts Square, Old Masonic Hall and Psycle9600 in Breckenridge.

When: 3-11 p.m. each day from May 30 through June 2.

Cost: Free. Visit BreckCreate.org/Wave for a complete schedule and more information.

BRECKENRIDGE — The fourth annual WAVE: Light + Water + Sound festival begins next week in downtown Breckenridge. The free, four-day gathering of illuminated and interactive installations invites the public to bask in pieces that blend the natural, musical and industrial worlds.

With works made by international and Colorado-based artists, people can expect everything from a cloud made of light bulbs to wireframe birds to a cellist playing on the Blue River.

“This event builds on our success with other nature-inspired activities as well as supports our commitment to programs that focus on environmental and place-based relevancy,” said Robb Woulfe, president and CEO of Breckenridge Creative Arts, in a press release. “The artworks featured in this year’s WAVE festival explore various ecological topics that are important to both local residents as well as guests who visit our beautiful mountain community.”


Seven different works of public art will dot Breckenridge’s scenic landscape. The pieces are either U.S. premieres, Colorado premieres or brand new commissions never seen before.

Most will be displayed on the Arts District campus on Washington Avenue. There, people can pull on the strings of thousands of light bulbs in Caitlind r.c. Brown and Wayne Garrett’s CLOUD, interact with Scott Young’s neon work Intermittent Positive Reinforcement, or gaze at the ethereal wire sculptures of Cédric Le Borgne’s Les Voyageurs and Les Oiseaux.

On the Blue River Plaza, festivalgoers can walk under metallic arches in Iceberg, an immersive, organ-like installation by ATOMIC3 and APPAREIL Architecture that follows the life cycle of giant pieces of ice with light and sound.

At the gallery inside the Old Masonic Hall sits Tension, a series of neon “ropes” created by Denver-based Young. Dangling on a system of mechanical pulleys, the piece is meant to evoke the equipment of Summit County’s mining past. To learn more about Tension, visit Old Masonic Hall on Friday, May 31, to hear Young give a half-hour presentation at 6 p.m.

ACT Lighting Design, a Belgian-based design agency, created a holographic-like net called Light Flows that will be visible on the Riverwalk Center lawn. Various light-themed images of nature will be projected on the installation as it floats in the air.

If folks want a bit of exercise with their artwork, they should check out Ekumen’s Loop. A combination of a music box, zoetrope and railway handcar, participants sit inside the machine and pull the lever to create an animated movie with images and sounds that sync up with the pace they set.

Concerts and Screenings

Because sound is a vital element to the WAVE festival, attendees can enjoy multiple pop-up concerts along with film screenings.

Musicians from the National Repertory Orchestra will perform each day from 5–9 p.m. at the Arts District campus. Called “Floating Brass,” the series will feature William Berue and David Nakazono on trumpets, Jessica Elder on horn, Robyn Smith on trombone and Riley Lindsey on tuba.

If folks want more music, cellist Russick Smith will perform nightly at 8 and 10 on an island in the Blue River near the Riverwalk Center. Smith is a cellist, multi-instrumentalist, engineer and composer from Colorado. His music is derived from a life of experiences rooted in the West.

Lastly, the Breckenridge Film Festival will present a free collection of short films thematically tied to WAVE each night on the Arts District campus from 8:30–11.

Community events and workshops

While some installations are interactive, those who want to truly express themselves should check out BreckCreate’s workshops and other events happening during the festival. Kicking things off is LightCycles, an event held in partnership with Psycle9600 that parades cyclists through the WAVE exhibits while riding decked out bicycles. Riders should gather between 7–8 p.m. at Psycle9600 (505 S. Main St.) with pre-decorated bikes, or gear up on-site with free glow swag, and ride from 8-9.

Throughout the weekend people can visit the Arts District’s Ceramic Studio, Randall Barn, Hot Shop, Fuqua Liver Stable and Quandary Antiques Cabin for various workshops. Kids aged 1-6, with parental supervision, can create iceberg sculptures and sun catchers. Those 6 and up can make cloud art, bird books, mesh sculptures and drip art.

Interested people 15 and older have the opportunity to weld tin cam luminaries, craft shadow boxes out of wood, paint acrylic and watercolor nightscapes, form ceramic cloud trays and distill plants for essential oils.

Additionally, Young will educate folks about his signature medium, neon, on Saturday, June 1, from 5–6:30 p.m. Also on Saturday, those 15 and up can help create a glass chandelier at the Hot Shop from 5:30–7:30 p.m. Only six people can work on the community project at a time and it is first come, first served with registration at the door. Participants are encouraged to wear natural fiber clothing such as cotton or wool and contact lenses instead of glasses.

Register at the BreckCreate website online to ensure a spot for most of the workshops. Participants must check in at Old Masonic Hall before the classes. However, similar to the chandelier project, Young’s workshop is first come, first served and registration will happen at the Robert Whyte House.

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