Art Beat Saturday in South Bend

Published 8:09 am Thursday, August 23, 2012

Attendees stroll through the streets of downtown South Bend during Art Beat 2011. This year’s event is on Saturday, Aug. 25 from 11 a.m. until 6 p.m. featuring over 300 artists. Submitted photo

The newest feature — and certainly one of the coolest — at Saturday’s Art Beat in downtown South Bend, Ind., is the community art project.

Event host, Downtown South Bend Inc., has partnered with local artist, Ben Roseland, to create an original piece of art with a South Bend twist. Roseland’s artwork will be divided into one-inch squares and, while material lasts, the community can paint what they see on a one-inch square onto a one-foot tile. Once the show is over, each one-foot tile will be combined to form one large art piece and displayed permanently somewhere downtown.

So what will it look like?

“People get to see what that piece is at Art Beat. We aren’t releasing that at this time,” said Julie Curtis, director of marketing for Downtown South Bend.

Hundreds of artists

The community art project is one of many things people can expect to see and do during Art Fest, which runs from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. in the downtown area. Admission is free.

More than 300 artists from a seven-county area will take part in Art Beat, making it the largest concentration of artists in downtown since the event’s debut in 2004.

Visual artists of every kind will come together showcasing a variety of mediums such as watercolor, jewelry, print making, drawing, pottery, sculpting and fiber arts. Multiple stages and venues will accommodate performing artists ranging from singers and dancers to fashion shows and poetry readers. Performers will roam the downtown streets and plazas; others will take their talents to one of four main stages located at the corner of Michigan and Washington Streets, the patio at DoubleTree by Hilton, Key Bank Plaza, and inside the State Theatre.

Lots to see and do

Fiddler’s Hearth Public House, 127 N. Main St., invites everyone to finish the street art on the building’s south exterior wall. The graffiti theme is “We are South Bend”. All messages and images must be family friendly. Paint and scaffold will be provided.

Curtis said several others booths will offer free art projects for children and adults.

“There’s lots of different things for families, kids and people of all ages to take part in, and you don’t need any prior art experience,” she said.

If you get hungry, Art Beat has you covered with the Culinary Arts Village, returning for a third year in a row.

Fifteen culinary teams will gather in the lot located at Jefferson and St. Joseph Streets. The tented village will feature artistic food creations, displays, and demonstrations by area eateries, chefs, and culinary students.  Wine and beer selections will also be offered for those over 21 years of age.

Curtis said small food samples would be offered for prices ranging from $3 to $5.

“People love being able to taste multiple things,” she said. “It won’t be fair-type food. Not hotdogs or hamburgers. It is all artfully-created food by culinary artists using local ingredients.”

There will be free all day parking on downtown streets as well as in the garages at Main/Colfax, Jefferson/Michigan and Wayne/St. Joseph Streets. Paid parking will be available in the Century Center parking lot. For more information about this event, visit:

In the event of rain, Art Beat will take place on Sunday, Aug. 26. Artists and media will be notified by 5 a.m. on Saturday, Aug. 25, should the event be delayed due to rain.