Northwest Florida's little know Digital Graffiti Festival at Alys Beach has just announced its 27 artist line-up for its 8th edition taking place in 2015. Digital Graffiti (creating graffiti using computer software and technology) is a relatively undeveloped field, surprising considering the surge of interest in both graffiti and digital arts practices respectively.
The festival elicits participants come from the fields of film, art, and music who project their art on site at Alys Beach, a luxury developed community in the Florida Panhandle, at Route 30A over three nights (June 4–6, with a Curator's Tour on Thursday, June 4). The works will be projected onto buildings transforming the blank canvas on the Gulf of Mexico and its highway, in what is surely the area's largest cultural event and the only dedicated to outdoor projection art.
The finalists who will present work at the festival's 2015 edition have been selected through an open and free submission process. In previous years the festival's artists have varied in quality and approach and this year's selelction seems to follow suit, from more artistic productions (worth looking out for among this year's names are Australian generative artist Jonathan McCabe and film makers such as Christine Lucy Latimer, Daniel Wechsler and Muriel Montini) to more commercial 3D motion graphics and photograms. Perhaps the lack of critical press or the festival's high ticket entry price ($160 for a weekend pass of three days) has affected the consistency of the event, from being a comprehensive insight into the current mood or interests in the field.
Festival Curator Brett Phares has noted, however, a return to handpainted aesthetics in this year's submissions, which certainly tallies with trends in other contemporary art fields. But how this event connects further with what's happening in culture in future remains to be seen following this year's output.