The Festival of the Arts and 21st annual Chalk-In displayed GW students’ artistic talents Friday while taking their mind off the stress of upcoming final exams. Student musicians and singers performed in Kogan Plaza while others covered H Street with colorful chalk drawings.
Friday marked the first time the Chalk-In was planned in conjunction with the Festival of the Arts.
“It’s a nice blend of the pure artistic talent of the Festival combining with students drawing and saying whatever they want at the Chalk-In,” said Robert Wilson, assistant director for educational services at the GW Counseling Center, at the event.
GW began the Chalk-In to provide a stress break for students around exam time, Wilson said.
“(Students) can make political, cultural or romantic statements,” Wilson said.
Foggy Bottom resident Don Tobey joined the Chalk-In, showing his support for GW students by writing, “GW Class of 2001 is the greatest,” in blue and gold chalk on one corner of H and 22nd streets.
“I’m out here fighting for the students,” Tobey said. “Foggy Bottom residents are always so negative towards students, but I think they are great.”
Senior Jessica Love worked with the Student Activities Center, Columbian College of Arts and Sciences and Program Board to organize the Festival.
“This has been really popular because students just need a break from work and can come down and enjoy and participate in all the different arts,” Love said.
Cultural student groups displayed their art at the Kogan Plaza festival. The South Asian Society practiced the traditional art of Mendhi, making designs on students’ hands, backs and stomachs with a paste made from henna plant. Latinos For Progress crafted colorful traditional masks out of paper, paint and glue, and the Martial Arts Club demonstrated individual fighting moves.
Students unleashed their creativity at tables with Play-Doh, pottery painting, origami and frame making.
Seniors Mat Ramsey and Tom Cortese represented GW’s chapter of Students for the Advancement of Photographic Fine Art, displaying their own photography.
Student performers provided entertainment for the day’s events, including solo artist Adam Richman and the all-women a cappella group The Pitches. Music from WHFS 99.1 FM played throughout the day. The station rounded off an eight-college tour in D.C. this month, giving away CDs and stickers, and raffling Green Day concert tickets.