The City of El Paso Museums and Cultural Affairs Department (MCAD) has revealed the line-up for this year’s Chalk the Block Festival.
“Ten years ago, we started with 12 artists and 5,000 people attending. We have steadily grown to include more than 200 artists, vendors and musicians and installations from around the world,” said Assistant Director of Museums Cultural Affairs Department Ben Fyffe. “This year’s festival will bring new and exciting guest artists and continue the high quality entertainment we have come to expect from Chalk the Block.”
Every October, the streets of Downtown El Paso become canvasses for artists to display their chalk masterpieces at Chalk the Block. This year the festival will be held during the weekend of October 6 through October 8 in the heart of the Downtown Arts District.
This year, CTB will engage attendees with installations created by artists from around the nation.
⦁ Wish Tree: Yoko Ono – New York based Tokyo artist ⦁ Wish Tree is an ongoing interactive art project where visitors are invited to tie wishes on trees. After the festival, all the wishes that were collected will be sent to the Imagine Peace Tower on Viðey Island in Reykjavík, Iceland. Imagine Peace Tower is composed of a tall shimmering tower of light that appears every year and is visible from October 9th (John’s birthday) until December 8th (the anniversary of his death).
⦁ Spheres of Influence: Curime Batliner and Jake Newsum – Los Angeles ⦁ Created by Curime Batliner and Jake Newsum for the for the Mextropoli Festival in Mexico City, Spheres of Influence is part installation and part live performance that uses a robotic system from Staubli to paint layers of graphics (abstracted from the city) onto a series of human-scale spheres. The spheres are painted throughout the festival demonstrating how technology can transform a public space.
⦁ Life Cube: Scott Cohen – New York ⦁ The Life Cube Project creates large-scale, engaging, interactive and ephemeral installations connecting art and community, and inspiring the expression of goals, dreams, wishes and aspirations. The project encourages participants to look at their past, engage in the present and set goals for the future. Over the past five years in multiple venues, the Life Cube has inspired over a hundred thousand people through aesthetic, interactive cultural installations based on the artist’s belief that “if you write down what you want to accomplish in life, the chances of attaining it are much, much higher.”
⦁ Cycle Sonic: Squonk Opera – Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania ⦁ Composer Jackie Dempsey and artist Steve O’Hearn work with an ensemble of 10-20 artists to create post-industrial performances with original music, design, and staging, outside the rules of mass culture, fashion or academia. Giant, animated bikers circle the audience, with backdrops of undulating flags and 20-foot legs pumping with the rhythm of sustainable power. With no carbon footprint, Cycle Sonic combines the thrill of a live concert with the world of everyday transit.
⦁ Sun Metro Bus – Art on the Move: Curated by Kalavera Culture Shop ⦁ For the festival’s 10th anniversary, Chalk the Block and Sun Metro are joining forces to create a piece of movable art. During the festival, local street artists will paint one of Sun Metro’s 35-foot busses. After the festival, the bus will be added to one of Sun Metro’s existing routes for a period. Art on the Move was a featured installation at Chalk the Block 5, and it is returning for the festival’s 10th anniversary.
Festival visitors will also be able to enjoy live music throughout the day on Saturday from some of the area’s best local musicians. DJs will also be spinning throughout the weekend.
- Brandon Bailey Johnson
- Gila Monster
- Sonido Cachimbo
- Fixed Idea
- Frontera Bugalu
Chalk the Block is a collaborative event organized by the City of El Paso Museums & Cultural Affairs Department and the El Paso Community Foundation and sponsored by the Rudolph family of dealerships.
This year’s festival is also supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts.
The festival will be open Friday, October 6, from 6 – 10 p.m.; Saturday, October 7, 10 a.m. -10 p.m.; and Sunday, October 8, from 11 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Visitors to the festival will be able to access a complete event guide on the Visit El Paso app. The app can be downloaded at www.visitelpaso.com. For more information, click Chalk the Block or call 212-0110.