Thousands gathered in Market Square and Krutch Park on Saturday, April 1 to witness various chalk murals for the ninth annual Dogwood Arts Chalk Walk.
The chalk artists ranged from families and adults to children and high school art classes.
Every mural had an inspiration behind it. “It was a combination of mine and my children’s favorite things because they wanted to participate this year, too. Butterflies are my favorite. My daughter wanted a rainbow and my son wanted the Smoky Mountains, so we just combined all those together,” Amber Willis said.
Artist Fawne DeRosia decided to go with somebody who people would instantly recognize in East Tennessee.
“Honestly, I did a little digging on who is famous around Knoxville, because I knew I was coming here and Dolly was the first person who popped up, so I was like she’s awesome, let’s do a portrait of her,” DeRosia said.
“It’s really interesting because I’ve never seen anything like it. I have seen it in books before and I wanted to do it at home, so I always like to take back ideas like this,” Passarella said.
Founder Kathy Slocum discusses the reasoning behind the use of chalk for the festival.
“The chalk is used because it’s water soluble and we don’t have to worry about it lasting forever, good and bad. Monday it’s going to rain and this will all be gone,” Slocum said. “But that’s part of the intrigue of this art, is that it’s not permanent. It’s here today and gone tomorrow.”
Artists began their pieces at 8:30 a.m. and had to be finished by 4:30 p.m. Attendees could vote for their favorite piece and the awards were given later in the afternoon.
For the list of winners for this year’s Chalk Walk, check out their website.
Feature Image by Vanessa Rodriguez
Edited by Katy Hill