ArtSlam brings artists, performers to new home on Bradenton Riverwalk

wtatangelo@bradenton.comNovember 8, 2012 

Bradenton Riverwalk continues to be the area's top destination spot.

After relocating to the newly renovated park from downtown, the long-running Taste of Manatee reported its best year ever last weekend.

The third annual ArtSlam, formerly held on Old Main Street, is ready for similar success Saturday.

The Realize Bradenton event will again bring together professional artists, students, faculty and the public for a celebration of collaborative creativity.

ArtSlam will showcase the works of 22 creative teams consisting of painters, sculptors, dancers, poets, designers, photographers, musicians and videographers.

They'll be making temporary works of public art and performing along the Manatee River. As spectators observe and, in many cases, participate in the creative process, the teams will work throughout the day.

ArtSlam also includes live music as well as food and beverage vendors.

A total of more than 40 artist teams and performers, on multiple stages, will stretch from the new skateboard park under the DeSoto Bridge through winding, landscaped and often shaded walkways to the Green Bridge just east of the Twin Dolphin Marina.

The event will end with a presentation in the Pavilion & Event Area.

Kevin Webb, Realize Bradenton's creative services manager and chief ArtSlam organizer, encourages the community to "help us celebrate the fact that this art, and this river, belong to you."

ArtSlam Creative Teams

Our Transcending Universe by Urban Spiral Dream Company: Uses elements of nature - earth, metal, water, wood, wind, and fire - to illustrate the connections of each segment of our community to each other and the river. It includes a mobile performance from approximately 6 to 8 p.m.

Multi-Cultural Art & Symbols by Imagine Schools North Manatee: Brings a sense of cultural diversity to ArtSlam through the creation of, and education about, traditional cultural art forms.

Face Painting by Bayshore High School: Based on Chinese Zodiac elements, participants will identify their elements and create jewelry and body painting.

Circular Wave by Lee Baumgard: The audience will join a team of artists to create a circular painted structure that will shape-shift throughout the day.

Homelessness Through a Child's Eyes by Community Coalition on Homelessness: Hunger and homelessness as seen through the eyes of elementary art students with the audience asked to vote for their favorite works of art.

The Labyrinth of the Unbroken Path by Steve McAllister: Constructed utilizing the skills of local artists to draw attention to natural alignments and cultural paradigms.

Shake, Rattle & Roll by Southeast High School: Children will be able to paint pre-made ceramic rattles with watercolors. They can then use the rattles to accompany the many musical performances throughout the day.

It's a Jungle Out There by Southeast High School: Students will do face painting and there will be 8 to 10 local animal rescue organizations set-up for adoption.

The Vessel by Manatee School for the Arts: Students will create will create artwork throughout the day, which will include painting and dying fabric, constructing a large sculpture and performing through dance and song.

Wind on the River by ArtCenter Manatee: A colorful, interactive display of windsocks decorated and embellished by event participants and members of the community.

Ryan Life by Michael Haluska: The adventures of a young teddy bear and his sister imparting values such as tolerance, gratitude, integrity, friendship and love of nature.

Bamboo Organic Entrance by Jan Prince: Participants will work with a team of artists and volunteers to create a large, walk-thru, organic sculpture

Catch the Wave by State College of Florida Art Clubs: Participants are invited to "catch the wave" by helping create a large, walk-through underwater experience.

Field of Poetry by Leprechaun Productions: Poet Kevin Mooney creates a walk-able field of poetry. Thoughtful images and stories to be enjoyed by all.

Kissing Fish by Barbara Ellen: Artist will be creating paintings of her "kissing fish" throughout the day.

Art Gallery for a Day by Sun Coast Photo Alliance: Lead Artist John Kokajko, Matt Allison and Tara Sell will utilize interactive versions of multiple photographic techniques and introduce the community to photography and to the Sun Coast Photo Alliance.

Poetry Sculpture & Slam by Braden River Library: The community is invited to participate in the completion of a large sculptural version of poetry books by adding their original poetry. Poetry Sculpture and Slam includes a live poetry slam performance.

Ringling Underground by The John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art: Connects the people of Bradenton to the area's greatest arts institution through screen-printing, contemporary music and audience participation.

Sarasota Chalk Festival by Denise Kowal: Sarasota Chalk Festival invites the community to assist in the creation of a large-scale work of art.

Dancing through the Eyes of a Woman by Fuzion Dance: A live paint abstract by Beverly Smith will be created over the course of the day and accompanied by Fuzion Dance performances.

Skate-World: Lead artists Geza Darrah, Cheeta Chad and the local skateboard community create a one-day festival of motion, art, and music at Riverwalk's Skate Park.

Legomania by Jenah and Kidserve: Participants will create Lego constructs, and have their pictures taken instantly.

Performance schedule


Noon: Creative Percussion

1 p.m.: Open Door Band

2 p.m.: The Vessel Performance

2:30 p.m.: Tapped In

3:30 p.m.: The Unbroken Path by Steve McAllister

4 p.m.: Poetry slam

6 p.m.: Joe Bonfiglio

7 p.m.: The Tango Couple

7:30 p.m.: Our Transcending Universe fire performance


Noon: The Vessel Performance

1 p.m.: LIX

2 p.m.: Elephant in the Room

3 p.m.: Bayside Community Church Band

4 p.m.: The Vessel Performance

4:30 p.m.: Justin Layman Band

5:30 p.m.: Zumba

6 p.m.: The Vessel Performance

6:30 p.m.: Ship of Fools

7:30 p.m.: Speakers

8 p.m.: RJ Howson Band featuring Mike Kach

Details: Noon-10 p.m., Bradenton Riverwalk, 425 Third Ave. W., Bradenton. Information: 941-681-0708 or

Wade Tatangelo, features writer/columnist, can be reached at 941-745-7057. Follow

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