I Madonnari Italian Street Painting Festival planned for May 27-29
The I Madonnari Italian Street Painting Festival will celebrate its 31st anniversary from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on May 27, 28, and 29 at the Santa Barbara Mission. A ceremony at noon on Monday, May 29, on the Mission steps will introduce and thank the major festival sponsors and featured artist Meredith Morin as her street painting is concluded.
I Madonnari, the first festival of its kind in North America to present the performance art of street painting, is presented by and raises vital funding for the Children’s Creative Project (CCP), a nonprofit arts education program of the Santa Barbara County Education Office.
The festival features 140 street-painting squares drawn with chalk pastels on the pavement in front of the Mission. As the public watches, 200 local artists transform these pavement canvases into elaborate compositions in unexpectedly vibrant colors. The spaces range in size from 4-by-6 feet to 12-by-12 feet and in price from $150 to $700, each one bearing the name of its sponsor — a business, organization, family, or individual. The festival is sponsored in part by The Berry Man, Loreto Plaza Shopping Center, Yardi, Daniel and Mandy Hochman, and Bella Vista Designs. The festival is grateful and thanks the Santa Barbara Mission for hosting I Madonnari. Members of the public can sign up at the festival’s information booth to receive a brochure to be a street painting sponsor or an application to be an artist next year.
This year’s featured artist, Meredith Morin graduated from the Rhode Island School of Design in 1989 with a BFA in Graphic Design. She has worked as the Graphic Designer and Art Director at AGIA, Computer Motion, Nexxus Haircare, and Forms+Surfaces. She has received multiple awards for printed materials including annual reports, media kits, brochures, and advertisements. Meredith currently works at her own design studio, MMGD Meredith Morin Graphic Design, opened in October of 2016, and works as an assemblage artist. She has participated as a Santa Barbara I Madonnari artist since 1993, and has participated in festivals in Puerto Vallarta, San Luis Obispo, and Valencia.
An expanded area for children to create street paintings will be located at the west side of the Mission inside a private parking area. Some 600 Kids’ Squares are available. When completed, they will form a 40-by-60-feet patchwork of colorful paintings. Throughout the three-day event, the 2-by-2-feet Kids’ Squares can be purchased for $12, which includes a box of chalk.
Live music and an Italian market will be featured on the Mission lawn throughout the three-day event. The festival’s fabuloso Italian Market offers authentic Italian cuisine produced by the Children’s Creative Project Board of Directors. According to Board President Phil Morreale and Market Coordinator Bryan Kerner, this year’s market will include lemon-rosemary roasted chicken, pasta, pizza, calamari, Italian sausage sandwiches, gelati, coffees, and specialty items designed from prior years’ festivals including
T-shirts, posters, note cards, and more. All proceeds from sales benefit the Children’s Creative Project.