Jun 22, 2022 - News

Three local exhibits to look for at the Utah Arts Festival

A woman stands next to a mural.
Artist Durga Ekambaram stands near one of her paintings; Ekambaram is one of the artists displaying her work at the Utah Arts Festival on June 23–26 in downtown Salt Lake City.

The Utah Arts Festival starts Thursday and runs until Sunday. We've picked a few local artists to check out while you're there.

Why it matters: The state's largest arts festival predominately showcases work from out-of-state.

  • It brings in a lot of pieces and performances Utahns otherwise aren't able to enjoy.
  • Customers and fans who specifically want to support local artists might have to look a little harder.

By the numbers: Around 70 of some 180 artists' booths will display work by Utahns.

Here are three homegrown highlights from this year's festival:

1. Utah's 13 short films
  • The showings are divided into two, hour-long programs at Fear No Film, the festival's cinema exhibit.

What to watch: The Mill Creek Strangler, which confronts true-crime entertainment and El Moño, in which a child discovers her immigrant family's generational magic.

2. Painter Durga Ekambaram

Ekambaram will demonstrate her work 2–4:30pm Saturday on the Salt Bistro patio at the Leonardo.

  • She got her start with art on the ground — first with Indian kolam, where rice flour is sprinkled in geometric designs, and later with sidewalk chalk.
  • She'll be completing an upside-down painting at the festival, painting the image in reverse and flipping the canvas when she's done.
3. Hip-hop artist C. Valenta

Valenta shares stories of anxiety and triumph as a Black man in America.

  • In his new album, Kids at Play, each story is told through a song about a game: among them, "Tag," "Hide & Seek," and, painfully, "Cops & Robbers."

When: 4:15pm Friday at The Round (southeast of the library).

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