Sarasota Chalk Festival Brings Love and Peace to the Streets

Festival

BY SRQ DAILY FRIDAY WEEKEND EDITION FRIDAY NOV 11, 2016

Held entirely at the Venice Airport Festival Fairgrounds from November 11–14, the Sarasota Chalk Festival is gearing up for yet another year outside of the city of Sarasota with “love and peace” as its 2016 theme. Considered the most groundbreaking pavement art event in the world, the festival is just a day away from showcasing countless dazzling images with the incredible ability to trick the eyes of passersby into seeing three-dimensional landscapes and objects on flat asphalt.

Artists such as Kurt Wenner, inventor of the 3D anamorphic pavement art form, and Julie Kirk-Purcell, one of the female pioneers of the form, will make a return to the fairgrounds after breaking the Guinness Book World Records for the largest anamorphic pavement art at the 2014 festival, along with fellow pavement art pioneers Edgar Mueller and Leon Keer, among others. With as many as 240 artists participating, the local art celebration will also be giving 25 novice artists the opportunity to learn this distinct form of art. Using the road surface as their canvas and chalk as their medium, the artist's goal is to make the ground appear to dip inward or rise above.

What makes this year remarkable is the fact that this is the first time since the festival left Sarasota that all the artists will be performing together in one location. Due to the expansive space at the Venice Festival Fairground, the artists will be able to use the space and the natural surroundings to create more impressive traditional and three-dimensional illusions. By incorporating the landscape and other features to the images, such as treetops, the artists can illustrate a more life-like vibe.

“This is the ninth year we are hosting the festival and we’re really trying to get things right for our 10 year anniversary,” says founder Denise Kowal. “This year will be way more dynamic. It will be amazing to see how people from around the world approach this theme.”

The festival will feature food trucks, beverages, vendors and amenities onsite. Admission is $10 per day for adults, $5 per day for students and children 12-years-old and younger are free. Unlimited passes for all four days are $25 for adults and $15 for students.

Photo courtesy of Sarasota Chalk Festival.

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