Earlier this month was Baltimore’s annual Artscape, the largest free arts festival in the nation. This year’s festival theme was “Explore What’s Out There.” There were several sculptures around the blocked off streets. The one pictured above is of the planets in our solar system. Each planet was accompanied by a sign with facts about its physicality and differences with Earth. The coolest location in the sculpture was Earth because it came with street dancers and a DJ. It was a great area to enjoy some food truck deliciousness.
With the food truck options, I was not about to stop at one of the restaurants bordering Artscape. After much deliberation, I indulged in Crossroads Bistro Truck, which features combining two cultures into one dish. I stayed pretty tame and had the American-Mexican mix of the Rueben Quesadilla. Let me tell you, it was spot on. The Greek Salad Spring Rolls were also tempting, but I needed to save room for that all American funnel cake from a more traditional food stand. (I still don’t understand why fried dough tastes so good.)
One thing I really enjoyed about Artscape was the way strangers were able to come together around art. Although a permanent sculpture on the Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA)’s campus, I enjoyed watching strangers determined to move the rocks to change the balance of the baskets in the sculpture “Ripple.” I never saw ripples made from the baskets dropping into the water, but I saw many ripples as we tossed the rocks and missed the basket and in a philosophical sense many people joined in after watching a few people struggle to make a change in the cantilevers. In addition to conversing over permanent sculptures, the festival gave the Baltimore community a chance to see the artwork of many local artists as well as student artists at MICA.
While I perused the Artists’ Market, and picked out my mother’s Christmas present, I enjoyed learning about food in outer space. As with all festivals, there were many activities for the kids. While I didn’t explore Kidscape, which always features hands-on activities for the kids, I did enjoy a tent that presented the combination of science and culinary art to sustain astronauts.
Despite the heat, Artscape was a wonderful evening out. It is officially on my list of annual activities.