Visual

Seeking Peace

Creative conundrums at Anacortes Arts Festival

Attend

What: Anacortes Arts Festival

Where: Throughout Anacortes

More:

WHEN: Aug. 2-4

Cost: Entry is free

Info: http://www.anacortesartsfestival.com

Wednesday, July 31, 2019

At first blush, it might not appear that an artist-driven exhibit responding to the alarming phenomenon of mass shootings in the United States fits into Anacortes Arts Festival’s latest theme, “Peace, Love and Art.”

However, the 30-plus Skagit Valley artists who helped create the “Say Their Names” exhibit as part of the Anacortes Regeneration Project would probably disagree. The nearly 1,000 individual ceramic rocks that will be displayed in a nine-foot-high cairn as part of the “Arts at the Port” fine art show at the Port of Anacortes Warehouse will each be etched with the name, event and age of individuals killed in 84 mass shootings in America—including 57 children who have died since the beginning of 2019, and 40 Washington state first responders.

Project organizers are guessing this stark reminder of loss—alongside ceramic castings of guns collected in a public turn-in that were disabled on-site with the aid of a blacksmith’s forge—will be a catalyst for sparking honest dialogue.

“It is our hope that as weapons are regenerated into art, and names of victims are remembered, we can regenerate conversation away from one rooted in confrontation to one that strives for solutions,” they say.

With additional funding, it’s their goal the intriguing installation will have life beyond the festival, enabling it to travel to other communities where citizens, especially students, can host it to raise awareness of gun violence in the United States.

It’s probable “Say Their Names” won’t be the only conversation-starter patrons of the arts will encounter Aug. 2-4 during the 58th annual festival. Other aspects of “Arts at the Port,” including a juried exhibition that features the works of 55 artists selected by Joanna Sikes—the director of La Conner’s Museum of Northwest Art—are also sure to elicit discussion, as is “Voices of the Children,” a collaborative installation by area youth featuring beautiful butterflies bearing important messages.

Creative conundrums will abound throughout the weekend, but whether you’re coming for a few hours or exploring the happenings over the course of three days, rest assured you’ll find something to pique your interest.

In addition to checking out the offerings by hundreds of booth artisans spanning 10 blocks, another big draw of the festival is the Working Studios. Here, a range of artists demonstrate their creative processes to the public, offering a close look at what typically happens behind closed doors. This year, highlights include prominent painter Alfred Currier putting final touches on the last of 12 murals in the Tommy Thompson Mural Project, and graffiti artists Eric Gonzalez and Leo Salazar sharing their painting prowess.

Food Truck Alley, live music and performances from more than 40 acts on three stages, multiple beer gardens, welcoming merchants and eateries along the festival route and plenty of activities for kids will keep you busy. And additional art exhibits in venues such as the Scott Milo Gallery, the Anacortes Public Library, the Good Stuff Arts, Burton Jewelers, Red Salon Aveda, Pelican Bay Bookstore, and the Majestic Inn and Spa will enhance the experience.

“With the support that you offer through purchases and donations this weekend, the Anacortes Arts Festival is able to give back to creative programs year-round in our community,” festival director Meredith McIlmoyle says. “With more than $65,000 gifted this year to arts organizations, youth art programs, art in schools, public art, and artists, we feel genuinely grateful to be a part of your weekend.”

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Events
Today
The Spitfire Grill

7:30pm|Performing Arts Center Mainstage

Boating Center Open

10:00am|Community Boating Center

Bard on the Beach

12:00pm|Vanier Park

Skagit Guided Adventures

12:00pm|Skyline Marina

An Iliad

7:30pm|Maritime Heritage Park

Skagit Tours

10:53pm|Highway 20.

Plover Ferry Rides

12:00pm|Blaine Harbor

Seaside BBQ

5:30pm|Semiahmoo Resort

Ferndale Street Festival

6:00pm|Downtown Ferndale

The Phantom Tollbooth

7:00pm|BAAY Theater

Sin & Gin Tours

7:00pm|Downtown Bellingham, historic Fairhaven

Dynamic Duos

9:00pm|Upfront Theatre

Skagit Tours

10:53pm|Highway 20.

Pancake Breakfast

8:00am|American Legion Post #154

Fidalgo Bay Day

9:00am|Fidalgo Bay Resort

Lake Whatcom Park Trail Build

9:00am|Lake Whatcom Park

Twin Sisters Farmers Markets

9:00am|North Fork Library

Anacortes Farmers Market

9:00am|Depot Arts Center

Concrete Saturday Market

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9:00am|Riverwalk Park

Bellingham Farmers Market

10:00am|Depot Market Square

The art of arrangement

10:00am

The Flower Festival

10:00am|Depot Market Square

Sumas Writers Group

10:00am|Sumas Library

Lynden Farmers Market

10:00am|Centennial Park

Blaine Gardeners Market

10:00am|H Street Plaza

Lummi Island Saturday Market

10:00am

Airfest

10:30am|Bellingham International Airport

Cemetery Tours

11:00am|Lynden Cemetery

Weavings Pop-Up Sale

11:00am|Vida Nueva Rugs

Plover Ferry Rides

12:00pm|Blaine Harbor

Modern Quilts Final Weekend

12:00pm|Whatcom Museum's Lightcatcher Building

Sumi Fun for All Ages

1:00pm|Museum of Northwest Art

Summer Jazz Combo

2:00pm|Jansen Art Center

The Poetic Apothecary with Judith Adams

3:00pm|Upper Skagit Library

Nooksack River Walk

3:00pm|Horseshoe Bend Trailhead

Summer Fun in the Park

4:00pm|Blaine's Marine Park

Janie Cribbs and the T.Rust Band

5:30pm|Heart of Anacortes

Seaside BBQ

5:30pm|Semiahmoo Resort

Lummi Island Crabfest Dinner

6:00pm|Lummi Island Grange Hall

Sin & Gin Tours

7:00pm|Downtown Bellingham, historic Fairhaven

Skagit Tours

10:53pm|Highway 20.

Tomorrow
The Spitfire Grill

7:30pm|Performing Arts Center Mainstage

Boating Center Open

10:00am|Community Boating Center

Bard on the Beach

12:00pm|Vanier Park

Skagit Guided Adventures

12:00pm|Skyline Marina

Skagit Tours

10:53pm|Highway 20.

Plover Ferry Rides

12:00pm|Blaine Harbor

The Phantom Tollbooth

7:00pm|BAAY Theater

Skagit Tours

10:53pm|Highway 20.

Weavings Pop-Up Sale

11:00am|Vida Nueva Rugs

Plover Ferry Rides

12:00pm|Blaine Harbor

Modern Quilts Final Weekend

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Seaside BBQ

5:30pm|Semiahmoo Resort

Sin & Gin Tours

7:00pm|Downtown Bellingham, historic Fairhaven

Skagit Tours

10:53pm|Highway 20.

Birchwood Farmers Market

10:00am|Park Manor Shopping Center

Langar in Lynden

11:00am| Guru Nanak Gursikh Gurdwara

Community Free Market

11:00am|Flora Street

Dog Days of Summer

11:00am|Whatcom Humane Society

Bellingham Handmade Market

11:00am|Goods Nursery and Produce

Plover Ferry Rides

12:00pm|Blaine Harbor

Big Band Bonanza

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Skagit History Cruise

1:00pm|La Conner Channel Lodge

Summerfest

1:00pm| Josh Vander Yacht Memorial Park

La Conner Live!

1:00pm|Gilkey Square

Skagit History Cruise

1:00pm|La Conner Channel Lodge

Audubon at the Museum

1:30pm|Whatcom Museum's Old City Hall

International Concerts on the Border

2:00pm|Radost Folk Ensemble

Monday
Boating Center Open

10:00am|Community Boating Center

Skagit Tours

10:53pm|Highway 20.

Skagit Tours

10:53pm|Highway 20.

Plover Ferry Rides

12:00pm|Blaine Harbor

Skagit Tours

10:53pm|Highway 20.

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Bark Week

12:00pm|Boundary Bay Brewery

Camp Korey Classic Golf Tournament

12:00pm|Eaglemont Golf Course

Poetrynight

7:00pm|Alternative Library

Open Mic Night

7:00pm|Village Books

Guffawingham

9:00pm|Firefly Lounge

see our complete calendar »