Centerfest celebrates 45 years in Durham

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Sunday, September 22, 2019
45 years of Centerfest
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45 years of Centerfest

DURHAM, N.C. (WTVD) -- You'll hear sweet-sounding music this weekend as you stroll downtown Durham during Centerfest. Streets in the center of the city are filled with the colorful, creative work of more that 130 fine art and craft artists. Some are Bull Citizens and others, like Raleigh-based photographer David Epps, come from other places miles away to sell some of their best work,

"My partner Kaya and I have been traveled the world for nine years by backpack in search of, exploring the most beautiful moments that we can come across," said Epps, surrounded by huge photos of colorful nature scenes displayed on metal.

"We're infusing the image into the pores of metal, through heat and pressure.," Epps explained. "Like a tattoo in a sense, but for metal!"

A massive mural's a short stroll away, where the North Carolina Museum of Art as an interactive art opportunity for Centerfest fans,

Angela Lombardi from the state museum said, "People are really excited to have this artwork in the city. It's a beautiful celebration of the Latinx culture in Durham!"

The Rowe family from Raleigh brought small children along for their first return visit to Centerfest in years.

When we mentioned the interactive art provided by the state art museum, Mallory Rowe said "Yeah, we might look at doing that. Especially if the kids can do it! We're excited for the Kids Zone. We've been looking. There's a lot of cute art stuff, and there's a lot of good food, it looks like, for later!"

That's a big attraction for many people who gravitated to vendors like Crabdaddy's from Charlottesville, Virginia, attracted by the sound of shrimp skewers sizzling on a grill.

Sculptor Matthew Leavell lives in Virginia now, after spending 14 years in North Carolina. He looks forward to returning to Centerfest, where he has colorful, large scale metal flowers on display this weekend.

"In comparison to the other places we display, people love being part of the Durham community and we like to participate here whenever we can," said Leavell, who said this is a good time to visit.

"Beautiful weather," he said, "And kind people to chat with!"

Centerfest continues on Sunday, when we'll learn which artists and craftspersons are judged best in this year's festival.