75 Super Fun Summer Sidewalk Chalk Art Ideas – This Little Blue House

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The sight of kids drawing on the pavement with sidewalk chalk is practically guaranteed to induce a round of nostalgia. As summertime traditions go, getting down on a lawn to let one’s artistic imagination run wild is right up there with running through sprinklers and setting up lemonade stands. But what adults trapped in reveries about the long, lazy days of childhood may not realize is that sidewalk chalk art is a pastime that connects us not merely to memories of our smaller selves, but to a wealthy historical tradition that goes all the way back to 16th-century Italy.

While people have now been using chalk to produce pictures since the age of cavemen, the Italian traveling artists known as madonnari appear to possess been among the earliest practitioners of street art. Robin VanLear, the Cleveland Museum of Art’s director of community arts, explains in a post on the museum’s website

In 16th-century Italy various beggars, primarily amputees, began looking for a plus over the other beggars who proliferated in the plazas and market areas around cathedrals, especially on feast days. Many of them decided to create art , and charcoal from braziers became their first drawing implement. These were rewarded for their efforts with coins thrown down by pilgrims visiting the cathedrals. Ultimately the more artistic beggars began copying portraits of the Madonna, specifically those by the favorite early 16th-century liturgical artist Raphael. They certainly were dubbed Madonnari, painters of the Madonna.

While the 2011 book Asphalt Renaissance, compiled by the road artist Kurt Wenner along with B. Hansen and M. Hospodar, explains, madonnari realized they might maximize their earnings by working as traveling artists, moving between towns in accordance with religious festival schedules. The Italian tradition continued for centuries, and soon street art began popping up in countries like England and Germany as well.

The English counterparts to madonnari, called “screevers,” emerged in Victorian London and remained a fixture of the town until World War II. Screevers were less closely associated with religious subject material, but like the madonnari, they made a living with their ephemeral art.

In George Orwell’s Down and Out in Paris and London, an autobiographical book about poverty published in 1933, the author describes his encounter with a screever named Bozo. A self-declared “serious screever,” Bozo specialized in drawing political cartoons informed by the day’s news. (“Once a child got its head stuck in the railings of Chelsea Bridge,” Bozo said. “Well, I heard about it, and my cartoon was on the pavement before they’d got the child’s head out of the railings.”) Orwell suggests Bozo had ample competition among London street artists: “During those times there was a screever almost every twenty-five yards along the Embankment.” But whereas lots of Bozo’s peers drew the same thing each day, Bozo distinguished himself by taking care of something new—a method that he said paid off. “The best thing’s to keep changing your picture, because if they see you drawing they’ll stop and watch you,” he explained.

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Screevers were also memorialized in the 1964 Disney film Mary Poppins, occur Edwardian-era England. In the song “Chim Chim Cheree,” Bert, the twinkly-eyed chimney sweep played by Dick van Dyke, boasts about his side hustle Today I’m a screever, and as you are able to see

A screever’s an artist of’ighest degree
And it’s all me own work from me own memory

Bert is notably less concerned than Bozo about building a living—although same cannot be said about his hat. “No remuneration do I ask of you,” he sings, “But me cap could be glad of a copper or two.”

As VanLear explains, many European street artists fought in World Wars I and II, which meant that the practice of professional sidewalk chalk drawing faded for a great part of the 20th century. Then, in 1972, the Italian village of Grazie di Curtatone chose to host an international street-painting competition to honor the annals of madonnari. Your competition, known as Incontro Nazionale dei Madonnari, was a good success, attracting countless European artists and helping to revive interest in sidewalk painting.

Roughly ten years later, its profile got an additional boost from Wenner, who’d become the founder of 3D street art—a technique that uses tricks of perspective to make pavement drawings appear to soar from the sidewalk or sink into it. Wenner was studying classical art in Italy in the 1980s and started drawing on pavement as a means to produce money. He eventually made his method to Grazie’s festival, where he took first place four years in a row, then brought his enthusiasm for street painting back again to the US, launching an annual festival—the very first in the country—in his hometown of Santa Barbara, California, in 1986.

By the time Asphalt Renaissance was published in 2011, the US was home to between 50 and 100 street-painting festivals each year. Europe has also experienced a street-painting festival boom, with events in such varied locales while the Netherlands, Germany, France, England, and Serbia; there are options in Australia, Canada, and Mexico, too. So should you encounter some kids smeared with chalk dust this summer, inform them to help keep at it. There’s a future in sidewalk chalk yet.

Here you will find more than 75 creative, entertaining and entertaining ideas for chalk art on the sidewalk for children and adults. These creative art ideas on the sidewalk are a great way to enjoy the spring and summer days and be creative with the kids. These super fun chalk art projects are a great way to encourage kids to be creative while enjoying nature. #sidewalkchalk #sidewalkchalkart

About Dayana Melton

Dayana Melton
Hello my name is Dayana Melton. I have been working on chalk art for a long time. I will try to explain and show you the experiences I have been working on in chalk art for a long time. If you have any suggestions or questions, you can write to me from the contact section.

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