August 1, 2019 – West Bend, WI – The Museum of Wisconsin Art (MOWA) presented its third annual Art & Chalk Fest on Saturday, July 27 and Sunday, July 28, 2019.
This free, outdoor arts festival featured a juried selection of 60+ fine artists selling their work and 17 chalk artists from across the nation creating ephemeral masterpieces. The museum was also free for the entire weekend. This is the second year that MOWA has welcomed more than 20,000 visitors to the festival.
“Art & Chalk Fest 2019 was an extraordinary success. The new MOWA Gardens and West Bend Riverwalk East provided an expansive space for visitors to enjoy and stay for an entire weekend,” said MOWA Executive Director | CEO Laurie Winters.
Art & Chalk Fest featured a juried selection of fine artists selling original, handmade artwork in a variety of media: basketry, ceramics, fiber, fine art, furniture, glass, jewelry, leather, mixed media, photography, and wood. Visitors could shop from one-of-a-kind items and stop by each booth to meet the artists.
The museum parking lot became a concrete canvas for chalk artists to create ephemeral masterpieces, many of which were interactive and offered a three-dimensional illusion. Festival attendees also voted for their favorite chalk artworks.
MOWA was free and open to the public for the entire weekend of Art & Chalk Fest. The summer exhibition, Among the Wonders of the Dells: Photography, Place, Tourism, took visitors on a trip through 150 years of photography by eight historical and contemporary artists, telling the story of how the Wisconsin Dells transformed from remote natural wonder to the “Waterpark Capital of the World” and the state’s largest tourist attraction.
Art activities for all ages were offered throughout the festival. Attendees created their own chalk drawings outside on Veterans Avenue and took a break from the heat inside the museum with interactive art projects. In addition to art, Art & Chalk Fest featured live music and entertainment, food vendors, and a beer garden.
Since last year’s festival, MOWA’s surrounding four-acre green space transformed into spectacularly landscaped gardens. The MOWA Gardens include a field for activities, 800 quaking aspen trees, 1,200 hydrangeas, outdoor sculptures, and interconnected walkways perfect for wayfinding or meandering. It’s a must-see destination in the heart of downtown West Bend and is framed by the stunning Milwaukee Riverwalk, white footbridges to shops and restaurants, and Eisenbahn State Trail.