Street Art Fest to color the streets of Berkley
BERKLEY — Colorful stylings of chalk art will once again take over the streets of Berkley for the city’s Street Art Fest.
The Berkley Street Art Fest will take place from 11 a.m to 5 p.m. Saturday, July 16, on Coolidge Highway between Catalpa Drive and Beverly Boulevard. The event, presented by the Berkley Area Chamber of Commerce, is highlighted with a chalk art contest where adults, youths, families and teams can register to compete for prizes and money.
The event was held last year, though it was delayed to August because of concerns with COVID-19. Chamber Events and Operations Manager RoseAnn Nicolai said organizers were happy to have the festival back in its originally scheduled month.
“It’s a great time for people to come out,” she said. “The stores, also, on Coolidge, some will be having sidewalk sales, some will be, you know, having activities in their stores, having sales. So it’s just a great time for people to see the businesses that are on Coolidge.”
The Street Art Fest will feature vendors, musical entertainment and activities for children, including a bounce house. The vendors will be located in the Shop for Good Village, which has upcycled and recycled items, as well as vegan and organic handmade products benefiting local and national at-risk and special-needs communities. Artist David Zinn also will be at the event creating pop-up chalk art pieces throughout the downtown.
Nicolai said the activities this year have more of a focus on community interactive arts. One of those is an interactive mural experience by artist Daniel Cascardo.
Cascardo, a Huntington Woods resident, said his mural-making process has him create a black and white line painting, and afterward he invites people to come and fill in the painting with colors, patterns, shapes and more.
“They can choose whatever color they want to use on it,” he said. “The only direction I give them … is to get rid of all the white and … don’t put names or words or anything in it. But if they want to make the sun blue, they can make the sun blue. So they get their creative freedom, and then in the end I kind of pull it all together.”
Once the helpers fill in the empty white spaces, Cascardo cleans up the black lines and adds some shading and shadows to the design.
“Usually, it’s kind of like the stained glass kind of look,” he said. “If there’s a couple of similar colors next to each other, I’ll change those just to kind of make the design work.”
Cascardo said the activity is a fun way to unite people from different backgrounds to work side by side, while he gets to act as a conductor.
“I’m very excited because it’s local and I think they’re doing chalk drawings along with it,” he said. “You never know who’s gonna show up and work on it. So the energy of the crowd and it being summer, it’s always fun.”
Nicolai stated that Cascardo’s piece will be a permanent piece of art in downtown Berkley. It will be placed inside the Berkley Public Library after it’s completed.
For more information on the Street Art Fest and on how to enter the chalk art contest, visit www.berkleystreetartfest.com/chalkart.