The First Street Art Festival in The United States

Sarasota has no shortage of festivals and events for you to attend but with the Sarasota Chalk Festival you get to enjoy something that's just that little bit different. Street art has long been seen as not really being a true art form but Sarasota has tried to change that image by hosting this street art festival since 2007.

Although some of the artists do use a special type of paint in their work the vast majority of street artists prefer to use chalk - hence the name the "Sarasota Chalk Festival". The festival itself actually has its roots in 16th century Italy where street artists would adorn the pavements of Italian cities with images of the Madonna (Virgin Mary) and this art form then spread to other cities and countries around the world.

Each year the festival has a different theme and various artists from all over the world are invited to attend to display their artistic skills. So far the themes have included Halloween, "Pavement art through the ages" and for 2012 it had the theme "Circus City USA" - a tribute to the history of the area including such famous circus families as the Ringling Brothers. The themes allow artists to prepare their work in advance and also allows for some consistency in the different “pieces” on display.

It's si-highlight--primary to understand that these are serious artists and not just idle doodlers scribbling on the sidewalk. In fact some of the artwork on display has to be seen to be believed and even includes 3D artwork - all done in chalk. Plus because it's all done in chalk it can be simply washed away, although seeing some of these fantastic works of art washed away seems a terrible waste at times.

Obviously this adds an entirely different artistic and cultural dimension to what is already a colorful city and it's hoped this festival will continue for many years to come.

Yet another event to look forward to, each year, when living in Sarasota.

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