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Walk the Chalk

Street painting began in the palazzos of Renaissance-era Italy, when artists adorned the avenues with images of saints as the public looked on. Now in its tenth year, Denver's Chalk Art Festival builds on this legacy by adding a colorful splash of beauty to Larimer Street. From dreamy pastel landscapes to dramatic scenes, artists work on their hands and knees to create a kinetic gallery that comes to life under a viewer's nose.

"Each artist has his/her own unique technique in creating his or her piece. Some artists use brushes and sponges; others tape their fingers. Many artists will tell you that the dialogue with the spectators can be as rewarding as creating their masterpieces," says Kirsten Becker of the Larimer Arts Association, which sponsors the festival.

Fun as it is to watch, chalk art is a difficult, competitive form. Upping the stakes of this year's contest, six of the participating painters are bona fide masters of the craft. For the non-artistically inclined, there will be plenty of wine, food and live music, plus a special area for kids to get their hands dirty.

Free, festive and fun, the Denver Chalk Art Festival will transform Larimer Square today from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. and tomorrow from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Visit for details.
June 2-3, 2012


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