The weekend of September 24-26th marks the First Annual Fredericksburg Via Colori® street painting festival in downtown Fredericksburg, Virginia. Via Colori® is a modern interpretation of a centuries-old tradition in which volunteer artists create large scale pastel artworks on the pavement of city streets. This event is organized by the Fredericksburg Art Commission and includes not only volunteer artists, but performers, food vendors and other extended celebrations – all coming together to support the arts education movements in the Fredericksburg area.
The streets (Sophia/Charlotte) will be tiled and each square will range in size. The squares are individually sponsored by local businesses, organizations, or other units and the proceeds after expenses are used towards art-based education programs in the Fredericksburg area community.
This year, PONSHOP owner Gabriel Pons will be the inaugural signature artist for the Fredericksburg Via Colori® festival. He will be recreating his piece “Neptune’s Daughter” – originally a spray paint and stencil image of an aquatic goddess with the sea swarming above her.
The original piece was constructed in February 2010 and was inspired by a Pixies song entitled “Mr. Grieves”, where the lyrics include: “…what’s that floating in the water, oh Neptune’s only daughter, I believe in Mr. Grieves.” Gabriel will be challenged to recreate this piece on a 10ft by 10ft pavement square, using a soft chalk pastel. In the weeks leading up to the event he will be strategizing in terms of just how to recreate this image in both a different media, method, and at a much larger scale. Below are some photos from the Via Colori® workshop held Saturday August 21. Via Colori® artist Curtis Goldstein gave a two-hour demonstration to participating artists. Volunteer artists had a chance to experiment with the unique medium of pastel chalk on a street surface.
Pons experimented with chalk pastels during the Via Colori workshop last month. (photo courtesy Leslie Brier)
Pons will be painting a 10ft x 10ft chalk mural during the event. (photo courtesy Leslie Brier)
Throughout the weekend, festival goers are invited to come downtown to explore and immerse themselves in the diversity of the Fredericksburg art community. Via Colori® will utilize Sophia street and Charlotte street for the event.