Art collides in De Pere’s first art walk of the year
By Lee Reinsch
DE PERE – On Friday evening, downtown De Pere will turn into a welcome refuge for the art-deprived soul as the city welcomes in the first art walk of the summer season.
Friday’s art walk spotlights more than 45 artists and their creations at more than two dozen De Pere businesses on both the east and west sides of the river.
The event includes artists who are up and coming artists as well as established professionals.
From 4 to 8 p.m. Friday, businesses will be open for the carefree wanderers to stroll in, meet many of the artists and feast their senses on original art amid the backdrop of live music by Chicago singer-songwriter Paige Hargrove.
She will be performing at George Street Plaza, located at George Street and Broadway.
A few of the art forms represented will be photography, glass art, watercolor, oil paint and acrylic paintings, wood burning, graffiti art, ceramics and jewelry.
The art walk coincides with the opening of a feature that is new to the city this year: the Downtown De Pere Sculpture Walk.
Ten original sculptures are here for the summer and have been installed in various spots: in the 100 block of North Broadway, the 400 block of George Street, the 100 block of North Wisconsin and the 400 block of James Street.
The city is leasing the sculptures from the artists for several months, but at the end of the summer, Definitely De Pere will purchase one sculpture to remain in downtown De Pere permanently.
Visitors are asked to vote on the work they would like to see find a home here.
The idea for the sculpture walk is patterned after a similar event in Eau Claire, said Tina Quigley, executive director of Definitely De Pere.
The sculpture walk project is being funded with a portion of the excess stadium tax money revenue fund.
Adding life to the art walk
Mural artists from De Pere’s sister city, Amal, Sweden, will be leading a live collaborative mural on the side of the building located at 115 N. Wisconsin St.
Called “Interlaced,” the mural focuses on water, using the presence of rivers and water in both cities as a common element. Sweden’s Amalsan river runs through the city of Amal, so rivers and water are an obvious link between the two cities.
The public is invited to roll up their sleeves and add some colorful pigment to the illustration if they choose.
“Interlaced” will be downtown De Pere’s sixth outdoor mural.
If a saunter through a city of art isn’t already good enough, the icing on the proverbial cupcake is the free nonstop trolley taking guests from the east side of downtown over the river to the west, in a continuous loop.
Visitors will be able to catch the trolley at the corner of George and Broadway streets and in the Nicolet Square parking lot by the artlessBastard.
There will be maps with artist listings available at the trolley sites, as well.
The entire evening is free of charge (unless, of course, you decide to make an artist’s day by buying a couple pieces of their art).