Art: What is it Good For? | Street arts showcase community

Art What Is It Good For


Big Picture Peoria 2019 Street Festival will be held Oct. 12. We felt you would enjoy hearing about it from some of those who are working hard again this year to hold the most unique and surprising annual arts event in all of central Illinois.

Bryan Blanks, Creative Director

“Last year’s Big Picture Festival was one of the most special events I’ve seen in Peoria in many years. The event truly made me so proud to be a Peorian. Big Picture was a perfect example of how art is alive and thriving in Peoria. The Festival gives artists from all walks of life not only the opportunity to collaborate, but to witness first-hand the great work others are creating. I left last year’s Big Picture Festival uniquely inspired on a creative level and challenged to spread my wings as a local artist.”

Mike McGarvey, Photographer

“The wonderful thing about this festival is that it’s truly an ‘art happening.’ Festival attendees can watch fantastic chalk art, billboard sized murals and other art projects being created throughout the festival grounds or take advantage of a variety of opportunities to create art themselves or view other artists and performers. Really a unique, new, fall activity option for all of Central Illinois.”

Natasha Greene, Peoria Drum Circle

“I have loved being a part of the Big Picture community and meeting so many amazing people. It’s an honor and joy to watch Big Picture become what it is meant to be and see the deep impact it has on the rejuvenation happening in Peoria. The Peoria Drum Circle has been another amazing outlet for this and I am so excited to bring it to Big Picture Street Festival this year!”

Janice McSherry, Paint-by-Number Mural Team Lead

“What inspired me most was seeing families spending time together and creating memories. It was and will be an event that brings people in the Peoria area together. Children who participated wanted to know exacting where ‘their’ Angelique art was going to be displayed because they made a creative investment in the mural. It may have been a seed planted in a future artist. I can not wait to experience Big Picture again this year. It is a perfect way to spend a perfect day with someone you love.”

Angelique Racki, Executive Director, BCAI School of Arts, Bloomington

“Big Picture Peoria offers a platform for expression, message, and a safe space to connect to other artists –– to try out various arts you may not have had the opportunity to experience yet. You get to soak in the ambiance of imagination and fruitful interactions. Every square foot of the festival offers various perspectives of art as a living, breathing entity and energy instead of something just to be viewed from a distance.”

Other free, family fun activities include molten iron pour, 100 drums circle, $1,000 chalk drawing competition, cyber dancing, selfie spots, makin’ stations, Richard Pryor live mural painting, open mic competition, costume competition, art installations, community paint-by-number mural, Abbey Road Instagram spot, performances, music, food, beer, take-home-a-piece graffiti wall, paint fling, giant Kid Zone, Raku firing, Giving Hands sculpture, and more!

Big Picture

Participants learn a flash mob dance performance that was part of Big Picture 2018. (PHOTO BY BEAU COMMANDAY)

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