A couple dozen volunteers, a Jeep full of supplies, and good vibes can cover a lot of ground in an arts district over the course of a day.
new work by Esteban del Valle | image by Charlotte Potter
This is the project manager, Joan Biddle. As part of The NEON Festival, the Downtown Norfolk Council hired her to lead what we’re calling “the NEONing,” a project that adds accents of color and inspiration throughout the neighborhood. In real life Joan is an artist who works at The Chrysler Museum Glass Studio, which is also in the district.
That’s the first project folks took on behind her, making the fence at The Plot all technicolor. It was a grey, rainy day but the squad held strong. These next few images are from local photographer 2FPS.
A major bonus on this project–which created the happiest fence in all of Virginia–is the way it enhanced the reflected view out of the window of Zeke’s Norfolk. Big thanks to Zeke’s for giving us cups, paper towels, and generally being awesome about our motley crew traipsing in and out all day.
The rain gave us a rad puddle to play in. These shots are from local photographer Benjamin Boshart.
Volunteers began the process of beautifying the fence at the edge of Pilot Media HQ. This project–using something called privacy weave and bright masking tape–will continue on the length of the fence. One of the goals of this project is to keep people interested as they make their way from the Chrysler complex to the Granby/Olney part of the district around Work | Release, The Push, etc. Visual stimulus will make the walk feel shorter, safer, and more fun.
Here you have The Glass Studio’s Joshua Solomon and local glass artist Avery Shaffer. Image by Ashley Berkman, who day jobs at Reed & Associates Marketing.
Inspired in part by the drip work on the facade of The Parlor on Granby created by Heather Bryant (currently showing at MOCA VA), a number of drip projects happened. This is OBC‘s Alexandra Cantwell on Olney. You’ll find another drip-drip-drippy project somewhere on Granby, but you’ll have to walk around and find it yourself. This image is by the director of The Chrysler Glass Studio and internationally-celebrated artist Charlotte Potter, who is the hardest working person I know, but who still found a way to put in 12 HOURS of volunteering yesterday.
The Decker boys have continued their parents’ tradition of supporting the arts in Norfolk. They own the Duke/Grace building, which they let the squad art-up a little at the street level. In this picture you have Alison Burdick, who does marketing and booking at The NorVa, Charlotte, and a young lady who moved to town just a couple weeks ago, saw the group working, and chirped with delight when she was offered a paint brush.
I’ll only share a couple pictures from this last project, a collaborative mural, since it’s still very much a work in progress–the artists will be out again today.
This right here is what an arts district is all about. Local artists involved include Michael Scott Younger III, Meg Mori, Janice Dulay, Christopher Revels, Kelly Herring and Steph Li Puma. Brooklyn-based artist Estevan del Valle just got in to town to paint something big in the neighborhood. In the meantime he lent his time and talent to the cause of adding inspiration to a neighborhood (see first image in this post). You’ve got to check this thing out in person. There are so many rad little moments in this vibrant collaboration. This fine dude is MSYIII.
More to come, fam. If you want to get involved keep up with the Norfolk Arts District on Facebook and the Work Group. Thank you to everyone who came out yesterday, who will today, and every day in the future. You are the quarry of weirdness and good.