IVINS – Dozens of artists and numerous art enthusiasts will gather at the Coyote Gulch Art Village in Kayenta from Feb. 17-19 to take part in the Art in Kayenta festival.
Art in Kayenta was founded by several Southern Utah artists who desired to share their work with the public.
Thirteen years and countless participants later, the festival is still going strong and for the first time has now expanded into a three-day event.
“It is always our goal to improve,” event coordinator Deborah Kidder said. “People come from great distances to attend and we want them to experience [everything the community has to offer].”
Kidder said that she is especially looking forward to the musical performances, which include California-based R&B/jazz/soul singer Steph Johnson and blues rock band the Sister Wives from Salt Lake City.
On Friday at 4.30 p.m. and Saturday at 1 and 4.30 p.m. The Space Between Theatre Company will perform the one-act play “Crazy Eights,” written by Pulitzer Prize winner David Lindsay-Abaire. The show is free to the public; complimentary tickets are available at the Juniper Sky Art Gallery in Kayenta.
Though talent abounds, the festival’s main attractions are always its artists. This year’s lineup will contain oil painters Fredrick Stephens and Kate Starling, abstract painters Gina Jrel and Aimee Bonham and gourd craftsman Todd Prince. Also attending will be Kayenta resident and much-lauded bronze sculptor Edward Hlavka, whose work has been displayed in galleries and museums across the nation. He has also created pieces for the cities of Ivins and St. George, including the Five Running Stallions statue on Snow Canyon Parkway.
Also sure to draw attention are Quick Draw, where artists are given ninety minutes to complete a work for public auction and Kid’s Corner, where sculptor Matt Clark will lead children in creating works of art that, when completed, can be viewed in the Kayenta Arboretum. A face painter will also be on hand. And though the majority of events take place on Saturday, Kidder encourages visitors to plan a long weekend.
“There is something for everyone,” she said. “Don’t miss the beauty, excitement and fun of Art in Kayenta.”
The participating artists were equally enthusiastic about their event: “Art in Kayenta is a fun experience and a great escape,” said Gary Max Collins, who has painted professionally for nearly fifty years. “[My wife and I] built our home and studio in Kayenta twelve years ago and the beauty of the red mountains continues to inspire us. Art is so much a part of my life that I cannot separate the two.”
“Participating in events that help bring awareness to art in the St. George area [is very important to me],” added Jeff Ham, also a Kayenta-based painter. “It’s a way to give back to a community that has been very supportive, of not just me but many artists.”
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Copyright 2012 St. George News.