Waco Cultural Arts Fest showcases the diverse artistic life of the Waco community
By Skylla Mumana | Journalist
Cultural Arts of Waco hosted the Waco Cultural Arts Fest this weekend at Indian Spring Park in downtown Waco. From food trucks to art and activity tents, the three-day festival was filled with live music and art events for the audience.
Vendors, artists and businesses from across Waco attended the event, including Woodlands graduate student Melissa Liesch.
Liesch said she works at Martin Art Museum, located on the Baylor campus. The museum held an interactive banner-making booth to celebrate its 40th anniversary at the festival. Liesch said the achievement shows how important it is for art museums to be present in communities.
“It’s important to have fine art museums because it’s a vast talent,” Liesch said. “Everyone has a broad talent or skills and it is good to be exposed to different types of talents and skills within the community. “
Next to them, other organizations have set up booths featuring real-time artwork, such as the Waco Calligraphy Guild. According to his website, the Waco Calligraphy Guild is a non-profit Waco organization dedicated to the advancement and promotion of calligraphy as an art form. With meetings held once a month, the Guild helps those interested in the calligraphic arts find their form and express themselves.
Cindy Boney, president of the members of the Waco Calligraphy Guild, said the Guild has been attending the Waco Cultural Arts Fest for several years and appreciates how the festival facilitates and promotes all kinds of art in the community.
“It’s hard to have life without art,” Boney said. “I think art brings an aesthetic to someone’s life that you can’t otherwise get.”
Waco Cultural Arts is an organization that celebrates and promotes the diverse, artistic and cultural life of the Waco community. When it was founded in 2004, the main purpose of the organization was to plan and coordinate the Waco Cultural Arts Fest for the community. However, the organization has grown and now offers free programming all year round for everyone to enjoy. Its goal is to engage and enrich the community by organizing cultural events and activities, and to advocate for the economic, social and educational benefits of the arts.
Other stands, like Renee Martinez’s, contained works of art with unique mediums that anyone could purchase. Renee Martinez, English teacher at Baylor, is also the owner and founder of the art company The craftsman passionate about Renée. Martinez is a multimedia artist who uses recycled materials and paper as the primary medium to create her works.
After filling the walls with many friends and family, Martinez decided to start his business. His commissions consist of reconstitutions of personal photos of family or friends but with twists that animate each work and highlight its individuality.
Martinez said that since starting her business it has been a great outlet for her mental health and that she enjoys creating things that brighten up people’s days.
“I love making art that makes people smile,” Martinez said. “I think everyone deserves something that, when they see it, will brighten their day or make them smile a little.”