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El Paisano

Santa Fe Springs Art Fest 2019

Sam Garcia, Reporter

Friday, May 3, the city of Santa Fe Springs held its sixth annual art festival. Showcasing the works of more than 200 artists, the event also raises funds for art and creative youth programs across the city.

Marie Ortiz, the Media Director/Event Coordinator for the festival, says that the event is a great way for the community to come together and appreciate the arts.

“Art is everywhere,” she says. “People get to see magic happen.”

The festival’s featured artist was Yolanda González. González has been involved in the arts for 35 years, and this was her first year attending the event. For González, art is a source of “inspiration and energy” for her.

“I have to do it. No choice,” she chuckled.

Along with González, the event had two other guest visual artists: Trinity Gomez and Anthony Fuentes.

Gomez is a junior at Sonora High School. She attended her first art show when she was eight years old, and has always been fascinated with paints and colors. For her, art is about expanding your imagination.

“Being able to interact with people, sharing the gifts that God gave me, that’s what I enjoy,” she said with a smile.

Anthony Fuentes was originally a film student at Rio Hondo College. While at Rio, he attended a student art show and immediately fell in love with the “gallery vibe.” He likes the fact that people can critique his work, whether negative or positive.

“Art is expressive. It’s about letting emotions out and not holding things in,” he explained.

Fuentes utilizes yellows, pale pinks, and light blues in his work, colors that make him “feel good.” So, hopefully people have the same experience when they see these colors together.

Additionally, one of the more unique exhibitions at the event was the trompe l’oeil. This exhibition involves artists utilizing prosthetics and makeup to turn their subjects into fantastical characters.  Lily Moreno, one of the artists involved in the exhibition, is a big fan of comic book characters and is a self-described “nerd.”

As to why this festival is important, the consensus among the artists is that it helps to inspire the next generation of artists.

“You CAN make a living as an artist,” said Moreno. “It’s not just a hobby. It’s an amazing opportunity.”

In addition, the festival held its second annual film festival, where hundreds of filmmakers were given the chance to show off their projects.

The event also had musical entertainment, food trucks, and vendor tents. These tents sold buttons, jewelry, and other sorts of trinkets.

Toni Bedonie, who operates one of these tents, takes great pride in the products she sells. These items, like the other items being sold by vendors, are “one of a kind” products that can’t be replicated. Bedonie noted that one of the things people can take note of at the festival is beauty and how subjective it is.

“People learn to appreciate beauty. Some people will look at something and think it’s beautiful, and some people won’t,” she noted.

The festival featured a smorgasbord of different artists. Ranging from paintings, to ceramics, to even trompe l’oeil, artists of varying backgrounds expressed their art forms for all to see. Alex Morehouse, CEO of The Gypsy Shack, believes that therein lies the beauty of art. There is no right or wrong way to do it.

“It’s not like math where two plus two equals four,” she remarked. “In art, two plus two can be eight. It can be whatever you want it to be.”

Whether you’re an aspiring artist, or someone looking to pass the time, check out the festival. Of course, you’ll have to wait another year for the chance to do so.

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Santa Fe Springs Art Fest 2019