Studio 23 hosts online chalk art competition to brighten up the neighborhoods

Just because the coronavirus has forced them to temporarily close its doors, that doesn’t mean that Studio 23 in Bay City is closing the door on art.

The arts organization, founded in 1959, is working diligently to continue bringing art to the people.

Competition is currently underway for the first-ever online chalk art contest. While the downtown Chalk Walk Art Festival in Bay City proved popular last year with almost 100 participants (this year’s festival is slated for August and still scheduled to happen), Studio 23 has created the online chalk art competition to get people outside and bring a little color and creativity to these days of social distancing.

Vibrant colors filled the streets of Downtown Bay City during the 2019 Chalk Walk Art Festival.

"Events like this are so important because I feel like we spend so much time worrying about the next step, about what’s happening tomorrow. When you’re being creative you get that little break," says Tara Welch, executive director for Studio 23.

"This is a great way to bond with your family and do something together."

Participants have until noon on Sunday, April 19, to create chalk artworks on their driveways and sidewalks. The only theme is to be creative.

There are no limits on the number of entries and the contest is free to enter. All that is required is that participants "like" the Chalk Walk Art Festival Facebook page and post a photo of the artwork with the tag "@bcchalkwalk." The top three finalists will receive a T-shirt with their artwork on it, courtesy of Golden Gallery & Custom Framing. The top prize winner also receives a $25 gift card to Meijer.

The 2020 Chalk Walk Art Festival is scheduled for August, but right now, Studio 23 is hosting an Online Chalk Art Competition.

The online chalk art competition is not the only programming Studio 23 is offering during the COVID-19 pandemic. The art center is offering virtual art workshops and has organized an arts-based book club. Welch says that the center is also looking forward to the art reproductions coming to the local trail system this summer.

"Our mission is to make the arts accessible to all. We feel really strongly that even though we have to stay home, you can still make art at home," Welch says.

"Use household products if you have to."

Visit Studio 23 online to enter the Online Chalk Art Competition.

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