Borrego Sun - Since 1949

Candlewood Arts Festival Cut Short


Last updated 4/10/2020 at 10:39am

Panic Studio LA

What was supposed to be a fun, art-appreciating month of March thanks to the Candlewood Arts Festival, was unfortunately cut short this year, due to health and safety concerns stemming from the COVID-19 outbreak.

The Candlewood Arts Festival celebrates the connections between art, community, and the shared environment in the dramatic landscape of Borrego Springs.

Throughout the month of March, many were able to experience newly commissioned site-specific works of art – sculpture, installation, performance, and photography – and family-friendly art making workshops in this unique community, all for free.

The Festival this year once again brought different commissioned artists, who were able to showcase their unique visions, incorporated with what Borrego Springs has to offer in a variety of mediums. From family photographs to eye catching draped sculptures, there was something for everyone to enjoy.

Like many businesses and event closures, the Under the Sun Foundation sent out this message, "Due to concerns about our collective health and well-being, all remaining workshops and events for the 2020 Candlewood Arts Festival have been cancelled. All temporary artworks on Galleta Meadows and the gallery exhibition at The Mall will remain. Thank you for your understanding. Let's be well and stay healthy as a community."

It was later updated to include the exhibition at The Mall which would be closed, as well.

"It was such a pleasure for all of us to work with the community of Borrego Springs to bring these works of art to life this spring," curator Kris Kuramitsu said. "While we weren't able to hold many of the workshops and events as planned, we hope everyone enjoyed the work around town."

The Festival is sponsored by the Under the Sun Foundation, stewards of the 130 free-standing, metal sculptures produced by artist Ricardo Breceda. The sculptures are spread over 1,500 acres of undeveloped desert land, and taken care of by the Foundation, who continue to actively plan for the long term care of this important community landmark and resource.

The Under the Sun Foundation, formed by the Avery children, is inspired by the work of Dennis Avery, and his passion for bringing art to the local community and its visitors. It also supports a creative space, both physical and figurative, encourages people to engage with the arts, natural environment and one another.

Many of the installations and artworks have already been taken down, except the artwork on the sculptures and the exhibition at The Mall, due to the current "safer at home" mandate. Until the order is lifted, Kuramitsu said, "rest assured, it's all temporary, but will take additional time to take things down."

The Festival will be back next year, and Kuramitsu said the planning has already begun.

"We're already so excited about the projects in store for 2021, and another active Festival, so stay tuned for details," she said.

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