By Okon Ekpenyong
On Friday, June 9, 2023, Mayor Andrew Ginther, other city leaders, world-renowned sculptor Janet Echelman, local artists, downtown residents, and businesses officially launched the 61st Columbus Arts Festival.
The opening ceremonies included celebrating a new monumental public artwork between Gay Street and High Street. It is a 78-mile multicolored Twine designed by Janet Echelman that stretches 230 feet from end to end.
The celebration was a fitting opening to the 61st annual Columbus Arts Festival, which featured performances by the Harmony Project and remarks from Michelle Brandt, Owner of Brandt-Roberts Galleries, Jeffrey Edwards, President and CEO of Installed Building Products, Brooke Minto, Executive Director and CEO of Columbus Museum of Art, and Tom Katzenmeyer, President, and CEO of Greater Columbus Arts Council.
This masterpiece, anchored literally and figuratively across several buildings, depicts the city’s physical and symbolic evolution. The piece has red and blue fiber that appears to be bricks throughout the structures, perfectly showing its vibrant watercolor. Driving to downtown Columbus, especially on high streets, front street, and the Scioto area, you cannot miss it.
The Columbus Arts Festival featured a variety of performances, such as musical theater, dance, and spoken word. The fashion show will feature the hottest urban and contemporary styles. Food from different cultures and visual art forms such as drawing and painting were also there. With so much to see and do, the Columbus Arts Festival was an unforgettable event.
The Arts Festival can benefit the local, state, and even new American businesses because it usually draws millions to downtown Columbus over the three-day event. Over 225 artists from across the state and worldwide participated in the festival, spanning the entire downtown riverfront around the Scioto Miles. On the final day, Sunday, June 11, it was scheduled to open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. However, it closed early because of the weather.
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