Festival “Blank Canvas” - Invitation to a Discussion About Street Art

Festival “Blank Canvas” - Invitation to a Discussion About Street Art
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The street art festival “Blank Canvas: Art-ground, play-ground, crime-ground” will run from the 13th to the 17th of May as part of the “Riga 2014” programme. The main aim of the festival is to launch a discussion within society and among professionals about the role of street art in the urban environment.

In Europe and elsewhere in the world, quality street art is now less associated with criminal activity and the destruction of property these days, gradually becoming an influential part of the art market and a mirror of society. The objective of the organisers of the festival is to educate society about street art, present notable examples of other European cities where street art has become an integral part of the urban environment, creating entire art districts where street art not only attracts tourists but also gives impetus to the development of an art genre that has so far been truly appreciated by only a small part of society.

The festival presents an opportunity for all to learn more about the diversity of street art. The festival will include lectures by several international artists and theoreticians, a roundtable discussion and workshops where every visitor will be given a chance to participate in the creation of legal art objects in the Riga urban environment under the supervision of professional street artists. These events will lend the festival a theoretical aspect, creating a deeper understanding of the reasons behind street art, and the process and aesthetic values of street art.

The festival will feature lectures on street art by street art theoretician Tobias Barenthin Lindblad, urbanist and urban development researcher Evelīna Ozola and Gdansk Street Art Quarter representative Barbara Sroka.

The following artists will oversee the creation of quality street art objects in Riga: ROA, M-CITY, HOP LOUIE, MATTHEW TULLY, MONEYLESS, KIWIE, Dainis Rudens, FROST, Aigars Mamis, TRON and Paulis Liepa. Participants in the workshops will also be given the opportunity to create an urban alphabet of Riga.

Ahead of the street art festival “Blank Canvas: Art-ground, play-ground, crime-ground”, Riga residents and guests of the city have also been asked to create the first interactive map of quality street art in Riga. The map that gives the locations of the best, in terms of quality, or the more or less popular street art objects in Riga is available on the festival’s official website, www.blankcanvas.lv, offering any person a chance to submit the location of a street art object that he or she deems especially successful. The festival’s organisers, in collaboration with art experts, will appraise each submission and, if the particular work of art meets the requirements, it will be included in Riga’s first interactive map of street art.

For more information about the festival “Blank Canvas: Art-ground, play-ground, crime-ground”, visit the festival’s website, Facebook profile and follow the updates at the festival’s Twitter account.

The festival is organised by “Ideju institūts” and “Associates Partners & Sons”, and supported by the Riga City Council and WARP. 

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