This Florida Chalk Festival features the most 3D pavement paintings in one location

A 3D chalk painting featuring a gecko/chicken monster. It's bright green. Spectators watching from behind barriers.
Photo via Chalk Festival (FB)

The wild International Chalk Festival, ‘A Spirited Museum in Motion’ at the Venice Airport, Venice, Florida is the largest festival of its kind in the country, and absolutely worth the quick drive from Tampa. This year’s event is set to take place October 28-31. Yes, beautiful live art will be entwined with full spooky season sensations.

Once-a-year, spectators are afforded the opportunity to become an integral part of the fine art creative process. From start to finish, attendees can witness the largest gathering of renowned pavement artists perform using the road surface as a canvas to develop oversized masterpieces in chalk.

Photo via Chalk Festival (FB)

One of the largest chalk festivals in the world

In the 1980’s, an American artist named Kurt Wenner, while trying to make a living studying classical drawing in Italy, became the first American madonnari. He went on to invent the 3D pavement art which was documented by the National Geographic Society in 1985. He started the first festival in the USA, and along with the festival in Italy, was instrumental in transforming the art into a worldwide phenomenon.

Photo via Chalk Festival (FB)

Starting in 2010 and every year since, the Chalk Festival features the most 3D pavement paintings ever created in one location. Also in 2010, it became the first international pavement art festival in the USA. The artists who create these 3D pavement paintings invite visitors during the festival to step directly onto their artwork–becoming a part of illusion in photos. These artists come up with intricate ideas that make images and the ground appear to dip inward or rise above when viewed from a particular vantage point.

Photo via Chalk Festival (FB)

A giant pumpkin carving contest

In addition to the pavement artists who travel from all over the world, the festival organization invites anyone, of any skill level, to sign up as an artist and work alongside the professionals, creating their own pavement paintings. No other cultural organization mixes the most renown with beginners better than this festival, giving novice pavement and student artists a truly unique opportunity.

Other performing artists are invited to sign up and help enhance the theme. Other activities include the Pavement Music Festival, Food Trucks, Beer Gardens, Vendors, and family fun interactive art areas inspiring the ‘Young and Young-at-Heart’ to create impromptu mini-masterpieces or scribbles while visiting the festival.

This year’s festivities will also include a massive pumpkin carving contest. Those interested in attending can learn more by visiting The Chalk Festival’s official website.

Photo via Chalk Festival (FB)

A 3-D Illusion Museum pops up in Sarasota

The 2020 season the Chalk Festival 3-D Illusion Museum, a pop up museum with over 50 international artist painted 3-D illusions for public interaction in a museum setting. Located at the Ice House in downtown Sarasota the event ran for 6 months. 

The 2021 season we created the Avenue of Art a self-guided walking tour of 150 hand-painted sidewalks in response to COVID19. The tour celebrates Sarasota County Centennial with QR codes on the painting where you can read about interesting facts and stories about Sarasota County and the artists that painted and the sponsors that support the event. 

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