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Living Art Chalk Festival Coming to the Miami Valley

Living Art Chalk Festival Coming to the Miami Valley
Professional, amateur and student artists will chalk the streets of The Greene to raise awareness for national mental health awareness month

Chalk About It, the Miami Valley’s first chalk art festival, is heading to The Greene on Saturday, May 16, 2015. Two nationally known chalk artists will join local professional, amateur and student artists as they create living 3D art works to raise awareness for national mental health awareness month. The event will begin at 10 a.m. and conclude with a block party that ends at 10 p.m. The family-friendly event will also feature a kids chalking and activity area and a scavenger hunt around the shopping center. Local artists are still needed.

Artists will have the opportunity to compete for cash prizes and student artists will be invited to a chalking class with the guest artists. They will use only environmentally-friendly pastel chalk to create pieces that positively depicts mental health treatment, access and the elimination of stigma. Artists can submit an application to participate here.

Chalk About It will benefit Life Essentials and its unique and specialized programs that enable seniors and people living with mental illness to have a greater quality of life and take charge of their mental and physical health.

Visiting Artists

Jennifer Nichols Chapparo – Born in St. Joseph, Michigan in the early sixties, Jennifer Nichols was born into an artistic family. Her grandfather, Harry E. Stinson, was a recognized Sculptor, Painter and Art Professor at the University of Iowa and Hunter College in New York City.  After graduating with a degree in Design from UCLA, focusing on costume & clothing design, she continued to pursue painting while working in advertising and raising her two daughters in Dayton, Ohio.  Jennifer’s work was exhibited at various galleries and events in Ohio between 1992 and 1999. She also was very involved with the Dayton Visual Arts Center, serving as their president and as a board member and contributing artist. In 1999, she moved to Palm Beach, Florida. In 2004, Jennifer and her daughters began participating in the Street Painting Festival in Lake Worth, Florida, which is the largest street painting event in the United States, attracting 100,000 visitors each year. Jennifer and her daughters have completed several large 10′ x 10′ works, usually featuring women and children, a theme that draws much attention. She received her Semplice Professional Certification in 2009 and her Qualificato Certification in 2010, and her Maestro Certification in 2011 from the Florida Chalk Artists Association. In 2012, Jennifer founded the International Street Painting Society as a way to help other street artists connect and be more successful, and help street painting be seen as a legitimate art form.

David Zinn – David Zinn has been creating original artwork in and around Ann Arbor since 1987, serving all manner of commercial clients from small shops to major municipalities while simultaneously sneaking “pointless” art into the world at large. His professional commissions have included theatrical posters, business logos, educational cartoons, landfill murals, environmental superheroes, corporate allegories and hand-painted dump trucks. His less practical creations have involved bar coasters, restaurant placemats, cake icing, and snow.

David’s temporary street art is composed entirely of chalk, charcoal and found objects, and is always improvised on location. Most of these drawings have appeared on sidewalks in Ann Arbor and elsewhere in Michigan, but some have surfaced as far away as subway platforms in Manhattan and construction debris in the Sonoran Desert. Zinn’s chalk work began in 2001 as an excuse to linger outdoors, but has since achieved global notoriety through the sharing of photos on Facebook, Huffington Post UK, The Cheezburger Network, Street Art Utopia, and Archie McPhee’s Endless Geyser of Awesome. His most frequent characters are Sluggo, a bright green monster with stalk eyes and irreverent habits, and Philomena, a phlegmatic flying pig. As of 2013, there have been a lot of mice as well.

David is a self-taught artist with a degree in Creative Writing and English Language from the Residential College of the University of Michigan. He has taught creative writing and scenic painting, performed in and directed several Gilbert & Sullivan operas, recorded audiobooks, and hosted two children’s radio shows (The Rug Rat Revue on WCBN-FM and The Mud Pie Cafe on Michigan Radio). David is also an avid whistler, a haphazard ukulele player, and a dutiful shirker.



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