Every last Friday of the month, the Maryville Arts Coalition (MAC) hosts the “ Maryville Last Friday Art Walk.”
The event features not only visual artists and their galleries, but also artists from all disciplines, like performance artists, dancers, writers, actors and musicians. Artists range from professional storytellers to creators of recycled arts and much more.
The Friday Art Walk is unique because it is not only a way for members of the arts community to showcase their talents, but also a way for local businesses to show their support.
Each business hosts a featured artist, from any artistic discipline. Any business is welcome to participate, from coffeehouses to theatres, bars and retails stores.
Places like the Vienna Coffeehouse, Capitol Theatre, the Tomato Head, Boyd Thomas and the Market have all participated in previous Friday Art Walks. The Clayton Center for the Arts has also hosted an artist in past.
Each month new artists and new artistic endeavors are there for viewers to experience. According to the MAC’s website, the idea is that this will provide the community “a new experience each time they come.”
MAC, a nonprofit organization, is devoted to raising artistic awareness within the Maryville community.
Their website emphasizes their capability of doing this and “raising the aesthetic sensibility of the community” by using “education, experiences, and opportunities” to raise the awareness of art within Maryville.
In addition to this, MAC also hopes to provide and find financial support and to provide opportunities for scholarships for students who wish to pursue careers within the creative arts.
Founded in 2008, the MAC has been going strong and searching for ways to “provide, support, and coordinate events that focus on the arts within the community.”
In addition to this, the organization seeks to establish “a positive and lasting influence that will grow with each generation,” according to their artistic statement.
The Last Friday Art Walk carries out the MAC’s hope to support local artists, as well as encourage new ones and introduce them to the community. The MAC’s use of local businesses within the walk not only gains more customers and publicity for the venders, but also provides financial support for new artists.
“The Maryville Last Friday Art Walk is something that the Blackberry Farm Gallery at the Clayton Center for the Arts and Maryville College participates in,” explained Dr. Adrienne Schwarte, professor of graphic design and director of the Blackberry Farm Gallery at Maryville College. “It is a great opportunity to showcase our monthly artist’s work with the rest of the Maryville community.”
Schwarte elaborated, saying that by connecting local, regional and national artists together, the Last Friday Art Walk “provides a unique evening experience for residents who can travel through downtown Maryville to MC via the exhibitions featured in local businesses and local galleries.”
“It is a great way to celebrate the arts,” Schwarte said.
To learn more about the Maryville Last Friday Art Walk and view the future line-up of both businesses and artists, visit MaryvilleArtWalk.com.