Each year I write about the Dogwood Arts Chalk Walk, I’m tempted to say the art is better than it’s ever been. Looking at the art included here (and that not included), it’s easy to see the source of the temptation. But then, there have been many amazing drawings in previous years, so maybe it’s best to say it continues to maintain the very high standards it has set for itself.
This year’s event featured more artists than ever before and it felt that way, with artists spread from the Market Square stage to the southern end of Krutch Park, lining both sides of the square, filling the park and spilling over to the sidewalk on the opposite side of Market Street. And the crowds were as big as any I remember, filling the square to the point of making it difficult to simply walk through, let alone get a very good look at the art. The best viewing may have been around 7:00 PM – when the awards were distributed and the event ended.
It is one of our best events in so many ways and I’m very happy that this year it didn’t compete with any other major downtown events, as it has in the past. The years when the weather is good – and it was pretty good this year – families gather to render their artistic statements, as do friends and single artists and people of all ages. Welcoming to novices, as well as professionals, it’s at once both fun and a serious competition.
Presented each year by Dogwood Arts and managed by Oak Ridge artist, Jim Dodson and Kathy Slocum, it’s a great time to be on the square. I also appreciate that it enlivens the square in the days that follow as people seek out the art until it has completely faded.
I took these photographs Saturday evening and Sunday morning. I tried to label the artists, but some of the names were missing when I got to them. Some of the drawings were also damaged beyond the point that they seemed worth photographing. Additionally, some of them extended beyond what I’ve shown, but were cropped for the photographs.
I’ve included some that struck me and for which the photographs turned out well, but there are many other excellent drawings. I’ll have my full 120 photograph collection, which contains virtually all of the drawings, on the Inside of Knoxville Facebook page later today. You’ll find a list of winners here.