Two lines of visitors stretched into the parking lot at Charlottesville’s Ix Art Park as over 50 artisans put the finishing touches on their displays for the third annual Charlottesville Arts Festival this past weekend.
Once inside, locals were met with a wide array of artists showing off their crafts and creativity in the form of paintings, sculptures, music and dance.
Weaving through the sea of tents, guests flowed to the Looking Glass space, where they were invited to walk through an immersive art experience from a fantasyland.
Demonstrations and workshops were available throughout the festival, and to cap off the Saturday, the Bad Hat Fire Troop spun and spit fire while Glenn Richardson cut out wood portraits using a chainsaw.
“I think that what makes this art festival so special is that we have demos and workshops that take place,” Maria Vitale, Ix’s director of marketing, told The Daily Progress. “It’s not necessarily just a festival, but you get to see all facets of art. Whether it is watching people perform, listening to the music that’s playing on stage or experiencing the vendors. It’s based around being interactive and engaging.”
Artists and vendors submitted applications to be a part of the Charlottesville Arts Festival. And applications were picked out by the Ix Art Park staff to include a wide variety of artwork, according to the team.
Vitale emphasized the community nature of Ix Art Park, which holds events throughout the year that invite the community to celebrate artists and support programs that educate and empower. Similarly, the Ix Art Park Foundation is a nonprofit group that uses its proceeds to run summer camps, weekly classes, free film screenings, community nights and farmers markets.
“Everything that helps the community gets put back into the community,” Vitale said. “All of our sales today whether it be the ticket prices or the bar, we use that money to generate scholarships and programs. We are for the community by the community.”
Upcoming 2023 events include: FAE Festival, June 10-11; Soul of Cville, Aug. 11-13; Fantasy Festival, Oct. 28; and the Tattoo and Vinyl Festival, Nov. 18-19.