Art Crawl continues to grow
COLLINGWOOD - It started as a conversation over coffee.
Now, the Collingwood Art Crawl is becoming one of the more anticipated events on the calendar.
The idea, discussed five years ago by Andrea Rinaldo of the Butter Gallery and Mark Krause of the Espresso Post, has grown from a stroll to a full crawl this year, featuring more than 45 musicians and 100 artists.
“I didn’t think that we would make it to five years only because of the amount of time and work that goes into it. Now though it is like an addiction; you see it coming the third week in September and you think it can’t not happen, so you just go into it,” says Rinaldo. “The biggest thing about this is that it is on calendars now. Yes, you have to do a ton of advertising in social media, but it is on calendars. People now expect it and that’s amazing.”
Both long-time entrepreneurs in Collingwood, the duo knew it was important to highlight the extraordinary potential on Hurontario Street.
“This is the biggest downtown event. Elvis is a festival, but this involves all of the storefronts in downtown Collingwood,” says Rinaldo. ”Last year some merchants wanted to support the event, but they don’t open the doors because they see how important it is to show off the shops down here.”
The Collingwood Art Crawl is a free, self-guided art walk featuring live music, artists and samplings of food and beverages.
“One of the main reasons for this event is to bring artists who are stuck in their studios having no recognition and in some cases, no experience with people. Registered artists get a tent and whether they are 10 years old or 95 years old, this is their first time to get involved with the public and receive recognition for their work,” says Rinaldo.
“I have heard a lot of positive comments for the artists and the public in the past because of that interaction, so we are really trying to encourage the artists to attend for the whole evening. The public really seems to like meeting the artists and not just seeing what they have,” added Krause.
Visitors to the crawl can expect a wide-range of styles and music. There is a nod to Canada’s celebration of the sesquicentennial but there are also more than a dozen events that the two organizers have identified as ‘The Unmissables.’
“The Unmissables are really diverse so it really matters what you are interested in, but we have some artists like a glass blower who is bringing her furnace down and will be working after dark on the street and an acrobatic circus performance,” says Krause.
Rinaldo agrees, as she rhymes off a list of what to see.
“The glass blower is incredible, we have almost-naked body painting (family friendly) and a standup comedian. There is a show at the library with photographer Jason Booth. The All Saints Anglican Church is with us this year doing a fabulous presentation about their stained glass windows,” says Rinaldo. “So, be sure to wear decent walking shoes.”
The event runs Sept. 23 from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. in downtown Collingwood. For more information and a map, visit http://collingwoodartcrawl.com/.