The monthly Art Walk is a multi-venue art event that takes place throughout the downtown area, but for the landmark five-year anniversary last Friday it was placed in a centralized location in collaboration with the Fullerton Museum Center Association.
Consisting of 23 venues, it showcased various artists and musicians throughout the downtown area. Kelly Chidester, the museum curator, said that in March they shut down the other venues and came together to celebrate.
The communal celebrations included delicious gourmet food trucks, free arts and crafts for children, a beer and wine garden, live music and an open mic night located inside the museum.
Admission to the museum was also free. Incorporating all of these resulted in a great turn out of all ages, which brought the community together. The Fullerton Art Walk was recently named one of the best “culture walks” in Orange County.
“We’re really proud to have lasted five years and to be this vibrant,” Chidester said. “We were up against a lot of really good cities.”
Fullerton arts organizations such as The Muckenthaler Cultural Center, All the Arts for All the Kids Foundation and numerous others returned again this year for the annual festivities.
Daniel Torres, a facility technician at the Muckenthaler Cultural Center, was holding down his booth providing patrons with a brief history of the center. Torres stated that they come every year to spread awareness of upcoming events and services provided at the center.
The Muck has recently acquired the Placentia Boys & Girls Club and is excited to announce their plans to open a dance and theater studio. They will be offering dance classes for adults and children with hopes to bring a positive impact to the local residence.
Among the artist booths in attendance at this year’s walk was Solidarity, an outreach missionary company that reaches out to under privileged teens throughout Fullerton, offering after school mentoring, leadership and educational programs.
Their partner company, Solid T was there screen printing tee shirts. Solid T is a social enterprise of Solidarity based in Fullerton that prints custom apparel to empower urban youth. All proceeds generated from sales directly supports their career development program which provides job training.
Glynnes Pruett, owner of the Comic Book Hideout showed off a vast collection of $1 comics. She began her business in Nov. 2012 and said her father instilled the love of comics upon her as a child and is the inspiration for opening her shop.
She has created her own program teaching comic book design for the Fullerton School District and is sharing her talents with teens at the O.C. Juvenile Hall. She believes that her program is a beneficial way of teaching children life skills and morals through art.
Blanquel Furniture, a family established furniture store from Mexico since 1968, offered custom wood furniture in rustic, colonial and modern styles with a twist.
Blanquel furniture is owned and operated by Florencio Blanquel and his family. They also offer custom hand made clothing, artwork and showcase the artistic works of Chris Snowden.
Other vendors at the Art Walk included the PAS – Project Art School owned by the Prince family. PAS, established in 2009, has hosted around 50 exhibits and hundreds of local artists. They have also created their own line of hand painted custom jewelry and one-of-a-kind art.
The Downtown Fullerton Art Walk hopes to make the public aware of the diversity and quality of art in this growing center for the arts. Over recent years, the artist community in Fullerton has expanded rapidly, spurred by the number of visitors to the city and also by the increased number of art venues.
It brings hordes of art lovers to the streets of downtown Fullerton and to the various venues hosting art shows for the event. With Art Walk maps provided at each venue, it is a self-guided tour of exhibits around town where art buyers and enthusiasts can often meet the artists at their respective showcases.
The Downtown Fullerton Art Walk is all about building relationships between arts organizations, downtown business and the public and has emerged as an integral part of Fullerton’s culture. It is developed and promoted by the downtown art community and retailers who independently curate their own shows.
At its core, the Downtown Fullerton Art Walk is a coalition of galleries and businesses whose goal is to promote the arts and to build a tight-knit community.
It is anything but ordinary.
Downtown Fullerton Art Walk takes place the first Friday of every month, rain or shine, from 6-10 p.m.