Saturday, April 28, 2007

Artbreak displays a world of student art, including paintings by award-winning teen Gabrielle Reynolds; Sat, 10 am to 10 pm; Sun, noon to 6 pm

Gabrielle Reynolds
Originally uploaded by trudeau.
Two stages at Artbreak, at Shreveport's new Convention Center, are filled by commuity and school performing groups every thirty minutes. There's dance galore, there's jazz, percussion and singing of every type, says Pam Atchison.

Additionally, the AEP Swepco Stage features storytelling by professional storytellers along with poetry and prose readings by students under the direction of Manny Guendulay.

Peter Pan Players, under the direction of Trey Jackson, are encouraging young “stars” in a Creative Dramatics acting project that features the characterization of popular fairytales with costumes and makeup.

ArtBreak features an exhibition of the top artworks and literary works from every school in Caddo and Bossier Parish; more than 2,000 works of art will be exhibited. Henry Price, Supervisor of Art for Caddo Parish Public Schools explains, “This is one of the strongest arts exhibitions (adult or student) that you will find in this State…possibly in the South! People will be amazed at the technical proficiency and unabashed creativity of the students in Caddo Parish – and the addition of Bossier Parish provides a totally new art viewing opportunity.”

One unique aspect of ArtBreak is the multitude of hands-on art activities taught by area professional artists:

Jane Heggen will create several large-scale Paper Mache Sculptures demonstrating the Life Cycle of a Butterfly. The Butterfly Sculptures will be developed during Third Grade Days and the Festival Weekend.

Tarama Davenport is renowned for her work with Middle School Students who participate in SRAC’s ArtSmart After School Academics through the Arts program as well as her work as a resident artist in the artspace Fun-A-Torium. Tarama will teach students and families to create their own butterflies from wire frames and tissue paper.

Jerry Davenport will design a sculpture of “Grandpa’s Head” with a wire frame to create a permanent sculptural display that will be used in the artspace Fun-A-Torium for children to enjoy a weekly hunt to “find Grandpa’s teeth” during the “Art of Disney’s MEET THE ROBINSONS” Exhibition.

Artist Gerald Ortego will teach students and family members to design and create their own clay sculptural character from the movie, MEET THE ROBINSONS!

Featuring Animator, Cartoonist, and resident Artist for Sci-Port Discovery Center, Al Bohl. Al will teach the Art of Animation throughout the festival weekend. Check out Al’s website at

Kelly McDade, Art Professor at Bossier Parish Community College, will partner with the culinary team of the new Hilton Hotel at the Convention Center and the delicatessen staff at the Line Avenue Brookshire Grocery Store to create a giant sculpture that will motivate families to make smaller versions of edible sculptures using delicacies found in the pantry: marshmallows, raisons, fruits and veggies!

The Extreme Balloon Team, duo from Dallas, Texas will bring their zany balloon mastery to ArtBreak. They will attempt to break a world record through a speed contest that involves making balloon poodles behind their back in addition to creating giant balloon structures and leading balloon-blowing contests along with unlimited laughter and fun.

A major component of the 2007 ArtBreak festival include the creation of a 25’ tall POET-TREE designed by Shirley White based upon the Shel Silverstein story, “The Giving Tree” and featuring creation stations for Haiku Poetry, Calligraphy, and Leaf Printing.

The ArtBreak Festival and the Very Special Arts Festival have merged to celebrate the artistic abilities of people who are mentally or physically disabled. This year’s festival partners with the Louisiana Association for the Blind to demonstrate how artists see by touch or feel. Throughout the festival, students and families will look at art through the eyes of those who do not see.

Professional Artist John Bramblitt is a guest professional artist from Dallas, Texas, who teaches how to mix texture into paints in order to distinguish colors; then he shows how an artist discovers the borders of the canvas and spatial relationships among the images.

Sculptor Stephen Soffer will introduce students and families to seeing by touching. Students will wear blindfolds while they explore a series of large and small sculptural artworks created by Stephen.

Alicia Smith will lead students and families through a blindfolded exercise that begins with an “unseen” exploration of found objects. Artists will be able to select from a collection of small objects that they will put together into a sculpture. Alicia will help the young artists to assemble their sculpture, then, using touch only, they will add the sculpture to others that have been previously created and placed in the large shadow box.

Speaking of murals, nationally renowned muralist Chris Opp will make a mural with student artists.

Other weekend activities include an ArtBreak Cake Walk, the Art Alley featuring students from Ridgeway Middle School as the arts instructors, the Virtual Visual Gallery featuring 20 laptop computers that are programmed with Kid Pix Deluxe, the Inflatable Drawing Room created by Sir Kevin Wolfe and animated by artist Michael Phillips. Neecee Blackwell brings her “facial creations” to the hands and faces of young ArtBreak stars with full-face designs...or, chose a wild and wacky animal design for your hands. Only the Cake Walk and the Face Painting require a coupon, all other hands-on activities are free.

Please see more on parking, etc, below.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I just wanted to say "two thumbs up" to Artbeak. My children and I went Saturday and Sunday because it was so much and there were so many free activities. The really cool thing was after being at Artbreak for the weekend, they are very inspired to act and paint. Thank you to all of you who had a part in this tremendous celebration!