Hey everyone! Mort Productions here and I have a question for you all: What could you paint in 20 minutes?
Most people would probably say “nothing” or maybe “stick… figures?” This is the task given to local artist at the Art Battles events. Ramping up the pressure even more, they are asked to complete their paintings in 20 minutes while competing against other painters in a room full of people circling them, like a school of hungry sharks, watching their every move. All the while a DJ is spinning tunes and counting down the minutes for them.
It’s an amazing sight to see. The artists stretch, crack their necks, crack their knuckles, and tie their hair back. You could be forgiven for thinking they are getting ready to run a marathon instead of painting a picture. The host announces “brushes up”! You can feel the intensity and nerves as they stand in front of an empty canvas poised for their first stroke. As soon as the timer starts a flurry of action and paint. The canvas are transformed almost immediately into blocks of color and lines. The artist aren’t told what to paint. There’s no reference material. Watching the artist paint with such an intense focus and ferocity with only their imagination to go on it’s as if you can get a little glimpse into their mind. It doesn’t mean you’ll understand how their mind works as you watch blobs of color start to take on form and shapes become recognizable objects. It’s still an incredible thing to bear witness to. A swirl of people walk around a group of artists furiously painting, as sweat starts to bead up on their brows. The audience is a bit more calm; sometimes pausing to admire, or take a video, or photo. Many people live stream the event, but it doesn’t compare to being there and actually feeling the atmosphere.
Check out the full photo gallery here: http://www.mortproductions.com/Events/ArtBattle-March-2018/
“This was a dope event! I had so much fun painting in the competition, and meeting and networking with other artists here in Phoenix.” Tara Prescott, one of the artists that made it to the final round, said, “Selling an original piece of mine that I created in 20 minutes, getting paid that night for the silent auction, and competing in the finals round was a huge accomplishment for me. I am so lucky and blessed to share this moment in my journey with my friends and family. It was definitely a great night! For anyone looking for great art and something unique and fun to do in Phoenix, definitely come to Art Battle Phoenix.” Art Battle takes place in three rounds. The first and second round has first time artists competing head to head. The artists are given 20 minutes, a palette of paint, and a blank canvas. After 20 mins they drop their brushes and whatever is on canvas is their final image. The audience is then able to vote for their favorite painting. The top two artists from each round move on to compete against each other in round 3. The artists are given a new, larger canvas and a new palette. The winner of round 3 is declared the overall winner. Throughout the event, a silent auction occurs where attendees can bid and purchase the artwork with the funds going directly back to the artist that painted it. It’s a fun event and a great way for the community to come together and support local art.
For more information check out www.artbattle.com
Here is a list of the artists that competed!
Tara Prescott – @greene_te
Sheena Hyena – @HyenaSheena
Steve Caballero – @th6hors6man6
Nyla Bevel – @nyla.lee
Fin – @finartist89
Ricky Ruiz – @Ark9one
Francisco Enuf Gracia – @3nuf86
Erica Gillette – @AKA_tistic
Samar – @samarinthehearts
Jason Adkins – @throw_that_paint