GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — ArtPrize attendees say in addition to the art, community brought them to the festival after a years long hiatus.
It's estimated that thousands of people filled the streets of Grand Rapids this past weekend as ArtPrize returned for the first time since 2018.
“We just wanted to enjoy ourselves and be around great people… Have a good time, see some good art,” said Darnell Fields.
Fields and his partner, Tegan Jackson, brought their 11-month-old daughter to explore the pieces and find company.
“It’s just really nice to be able to be out and together as a community again,” Jackson said.
Attendees said after COVID-19, elections, and more events that seem to drive people apart over the last year, ArtPrize is an opportunity to move forward.
“While we’re here, we gotta find unity,” said Garret Felix. “There’s a lot of negativity and hate. We’ve gotta get rid of that.”
Marilyn Grasmen echoed similar sentiments while adding it’s a chance to remember her late husband, Ron. The two, who lived in Zeeland, would park at Millennium Park and bike to the festival in past years.
“There’s so many talented people, whether we don’t care for their art, they’re still talented,” Grasmen said. “I feel so much happiness.”