STORY BY LUIS VALENCIA
Hays is a community rich with musical taste and amazing artists and the annual Spring art walk gave musicians and artists alike the opportunity to show off their best work. The art walk is filled with music and displays of wonderful works of art. The streets were filled with community members and FHSU students. Many students came down to support the local artists while others came to hear the expressive jazz being played in the pavilion.
The community was able to walk around and view the artists’ various works. Emily Kohls, a student who is studying Art at Fort Hays was one such student. She was admiring the work of the Hays High art students and said art walks like this are vital in making kids feel like their work matters.
“I’ve been doing art since I could hold a pencil, and I really think art walks like the ones here in hays are important, it keeps the community engaged, and gives these young artists exposure which is something that artists need to have,” Kohls said. “It’s great for artists to show the work that they have put their heart and soul into. I am really proud to show my work. It feels good when you get compliments. Also, it’s great to see how people react to my art. I love answering any questions they may have and I really think that its beneficial to the artist as well as the community members.”
Alexis Karabinas, another FHSU student also spoke about what the art walk means to her.
“It is such a creative way to bring all kinds of people together. Even if no one buys anything, having our work discovered is such a heartwarming feeling,” Karabinas said. “But when they do purchase our work it feels liberating. I feel like I have grown artistically more in Hays the past year than I have anywhere else. I’m pushed [to] exceed my own expectations and get praised even when I feel like my work isn’t my best. It makes me feel at home.”
Karabinas also gave some insight into what art alone means to her
“Art is my safe space. Always has been and always will. I can have a million things going on in my life and I will still be zoned in on my piece,” she said. “It’s also a really fun thing to create for others. As an artist, I can make something so personal to someone in just a few strokes of my brush.
“I am a first generation student and I want to prove to not only myself but to my family that my dream of becoming an art teacher is actually my destiny. Being able to shape young minds could help make the world a better place. Also giving kids some glitter and glue to give a little chaos to the world is a plus.”
The art walk is an important thing for the Hays community to have. It helps artists grow more confident and keeps the community engaged in the arts. As a community, we need to support our young artists so they can keep making beautiful works of art!