My Reminiscences of events, old and new, and travels, far and near
Saturday, October 12, 2013
Blog Intermission No. 22 - Chalk Art in Marietta
Running in conjunction with the Art in the Park in Marietta, Georgia, was another festival called Marietta ChalkFest. We visited both on Sunday, September 1st, 2013 - you can see my post on the Art in the Parkhere.
This chalk art festival was hosted by the Cobb-Marietta Museum of Art. Twenty professional chalk artists from around the country came to compete in their allocated 10 square feet each. Local children and adults could also participate and create their chalk arts in a juried competition in the Youth or Adult division. (Click on collage twice to enlarge.)
This chalk art festival was just a block off the historic Marietta square, on the street near the Cobb-Marietta Museum of Art and on another street around the corner.
I enjoyed watching the professional artists drawing their pictures. There was a large variety of subjects such as renditions of photographs of famous people like Abraham Lincoln and Ray Charles (Georgia born singer, 1930-2004.)
It was not easy taking pictures because I was too close to the ground. It would have been better if I could have taken them from some height. I took the photos from different angles.
A photographer went down on his knee to get closer to the subject - so I did too, but ended taking the artist's leg!
But I did take a picture of her drawing - a soldier on a horse.
Artists enjoyed using Civil War theme and horses
and soldiers and spies.
There were other animals,
and faces of people and actors.
The winner was Jennifer Chaporro of West Palm Beach, Florida, with her depiction of Ivy, a portrait by Will Wilson (Jennifer was sponsored by Moore Colson.)
This is only the third annual Chalkfest festival in Marietta, Georgia, so it is modest compared to some other chalk art festivals such as the festival in Israel which drew 50,000 visitors. Chalk art is not new - in Italy in the 1600s painters would draw images in chalk in front of churches and the public would throw coins if they liked the art - usually reproductions of paintings of the Madonna and Child. These street painters became known as "Madonnari" and would make a living going around various towns holding festivals for religious holy days. In Germany they were called Strassenmaler, and in England Screevers. In 1982, an American artist, Kurt Wenner, who was furthering his art education in Italy, developed an innovative sidewalk style of drawing combining the century old technique of the Madonnari and knowledge from his classical training in architecture and perspective. This is now called anamorphic, or 3D Street Painting, 3D Chalk Art or 3D Pavement Art. Kurt Wenner and several artists including Julian Beever, Manfred Stader, and Edgar Muller are famous for creating 3D street art challenging the perceptions of the public walking by these masterpieces in chalk. (Don't forget to click on collage to enlarge and see better.)
I don't know the authors of these photos as they were taken on street sidewalks where thousands of people can photograph them.
Some of these chalk drawings are also professionally done for advertising purposes or to bring attention to various causes. These 3D drawings can only be seen from one viewpoint to get the full 3D effect; if you stand in another area of the drawing the image appears distorted. As an example of this, below is a drawing made by British Julian Beever at the request of Live8 to support the pressure campaign on the G8 in Edinburgh, Scotland. It is called Make Poverty History. The top photo shows the drawing from the side, the "wrong" side and then below it, from the "right side."