Northampton, MA—“Arts Night Out” has invited a record number of talented artists to create colorful masterpieces in chalk on the sidewalks of downtown during the seventh annual Northampton Chalk Art Festival on Friday, September 9. The competitive event kicks off a festive weekend that includes the Northampton Arts Council’s RETROFAIRE on Saturday, September 10.
Drawing takes place from 10 am until 4 pm on Friday. The public is encouraged to watch chalk art pieces develop and to view completed work in the evening while enjoying Northampton’s monthly gallery walk 5-8 pm. Cash prizes of $300, $200, and $100 will be awarded by a panel of judges for the top three creations. Presentations are made by the Mayor on the steps of City Hall at 5 pm.
The public is also invited to an informal family free draw 5-7 pm. Participants will be asked to help “decorate” the RETROFAIRE site located in the area between Thornes Marketplace and the city parking garage. Plenty of sidewalk chalk will be on hand for anyone who wants to take part in the activity.
Individual chalk artists for 2016 feature former prize winners and seasoned competitors Brandon Avery, Linda Babcock, Jennifer Gutterman, Robert Markey, Chrissy Neithercott, Paul Siqueira, and Sloan Tomlinson. They are joined by veteran Team Bodalimadriguez, aka Stephanie Gerolimatos, Mark Bodah and Matt Rodriguez, who return for the 7th time. New to the event are artists Erin Cleary, Jim Dubois, Rob Kimmel, Sankit Sabnis, and the duo of Anne and Simson Musante.
Chalk art sites are situated along the customary Arts Night Out route so that viewers also have an opportunity to stop at participating galleries and other venues. Festival locations include the Smith College Museum of Art on Elm Street in addition to Ode, Memorial Hall, Pinch, the Artisan Gallery, Thornes Marketplace, Cathy Cross/J. Rich, First Churches, Florence Bank, and Don Muller Gallery on Main Street. New sites this year are Sylvester’s, adjacent to the Chamber of Commerce on Pleasant Street, The Tunnel Bar on Strong Avenue, and Click Workspace on Market Street. Maps of the chalk art locations, along with their assigned artists, will be available online in early September, and printed copies will be at a variety of Arts Night Out venues.
The Northampton Chalk Art Festival is sponsored by Chartpak, Inc. and the Northampton Radio Group. It is produced in cooperation with the City of Northampton and the Northampton Center for the Arts. Details updated at www.nohoarts.org