Moscow Artwalk 2016 celebrates artistic community values

GABRIELLA RAMOS, Evergreen life editor

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Stroll the streets of Moscow this Friday to view the work of more than 100 local artists. With the help of more than 70 local businesses, the City of Moscow is able to present the 12th annual Artwalk. The Artwalk will feature numerous events, including portrait painting and live music.

The largest art walk in the region, the City of Moscow Artwalk serves to celebrate the artistic spirit of Moscow. In honor of the Artwalk, Moscow has decided to close Main Street through A Street to accommodate the expansive performances and showcases of the evening.

A featured event is the ribbon-cutting and portrait painting that will take place at the Moscow City Hall, beginning at 3:30 p.m. For the first time in Artwalk history, Mayor Bill Lambert will have his portrait painted by Colfax artist Henry Stinson at 4:30 p.m.

The goal of the Moscow Artwalk is to unite the city through art, food, music and activity. Vendors, such as Nancy Carvajal, have the community ideal in mind. Carvajal, a Ph.D. candidate in the College of Education at WSU, is bringing awareness to homelessness on the Palouse through the Sojourners’ Alliance Bird House and Art Silent Auction at the Latah Recovery Center.

All funds raised by the silent auction and bird house sales will be donated to the Sojourners’ Alliance, a transitional housing provider that has been defunded the $100,000 federal grant that has sustained its operations for the past 19 years. Numerous local artists, including the Palouse Women Artists, have decorated wooden bird houses.

The sculpture artists at the Intermodal Transit Center have installed their artwork at a number of locations throughout Moscow in response to the city’s One Percent Public Art ordinance, which dedicates only 1 percent of any funded Capital Improvement Project to the purchase and installation of public art.

In addition to viewing the artwork around town, there will be a free barbecue catered by LocoGrinz Hawaiian BBQ at the City of Moscow Public Works Department’s open house beginning at 4 p.m. There will be various food vendors on Main Street throughout the day, including Grub Wandering Kitchen and Sisters Cookie Company.

There will be live music in Friendship Square throughout the evening, featuring the Border Highlanders, the Palouse Jazz Project and Natalie Greenfield. There will be several live demonstrations and presentations on Main Street, including a dance performance by the Spectrum II Dancers from 5 – 7 p.m. and spray paint art with Kaelyn McClaine from 5 – 9 p.m.

The City of Moscow Artwalk 2016 is free to attend and will take place from 4 – 10 p.m. on Friday at various locations in Moscow.