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Positive Street Art live art battle. Courtesy photo.




Downtown Arts Festival 

Where: Parc de Notre Renaissance Francaise, 4 Water St., Nashua 
When: Saturday, Sept. 9, 1 to 5 p.m. 
Cost: Free 
Visit: positivestreetart.org




Take it to the street
Urban arts celebration returns to Nashua

09/07/17
By Angie Sykeny asykeny@hippopress.com



 Create your own art and watch art being created during the Downtown Arts Festival Saturday, Sept. 9, in Nashua. The festival is hosted by Positive Street Art and celebrates its mission to inspire a passion for urban art in a productive way. 

“Urban art is an outside-the-box version of art where [the artist] doesn’t necessarily have to come from a background of arts. It’s a form of expression that has no boundaries,” said the organization’s president, Cecilia Ulibarri. “Most people think we just do murals, but we actually do a lot of different things.”
One of the highlights of the festival will be a live art battle, which is the finale to Positive Street Art’s live art battle series held this summer. Six finalists — two from each of the three previous art battles — will compete to win the grand prize, a chance to work on a mural with another street art organization in Miami, Florida. The artists will have 90 minutes with a blank canvas to create any kind of art they choose with media like spray paint, acrylic paint and paint pens in front of a live audience. 
“The art always varies, because we don’t give them a theme,” Ulibarri said. “One year, someone did a painting of The Hulk. We’ve had people do different scenery. Someone did a mermaid. Someone did a detailed eye with spray paint. Then, there are the abstract pieces. So it’s really up to them to create whatever is their vision for that day.”
A panel of judges will judge the art based on criteria such as originality, composition, technique and the artist’s personality. 
“Some artists talk through their technique out loud, some are dancing while they’re painting, things like that,” Ulibarri said. “So the judges will look at the way they interact with the crowd.”
Artwork created during the previous live art battles and at the finale will be auctioned off at the festival. 
Another highlight is the dance battle, where people compete with their best street and hip-hop style dance moves. The first-place winner chosen by a panel of judges will win a cash prize of $300. The audience can also vote for their favorite dancer to be named the people’s choice winner. Those interested in being dance contestants can sign up on the Positive Street Art website prior to the festival. 
Mounted photos from Positive Street Art’s “Views from a Cell” cell phone photography challenge will be on display. Anyone can submit a photo or photos that they’ve taken with a cell phone before the festival to be considered for the display. The submission form is on the Positive Street Art website. 
A marketplace will showcase local artists and vendors, and an artist will be doing a live art demonstration with spray paint on an easel. Attendees will have a chance to create their own art on a community chalkboard easel and with coloring pages. 
“It’s interesting to see how people are united at an event like this,” Ulibarri said. “We’re a diverse organization with people from all different backgrounds and experiences, and we want diversity to be part of this event. We want to make sure everyone knows that they can participate, and that art is for everyone.” 





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