What to expect at the inaugural Da Vinci Fest Live
The virtual and in-person experience showcases the innovation, diversity and artistry that makes Philly vibrant.
The coronavirus pandemic has halted and canceled too many events to count since it hit the U.S. in March, but it has not stopped South Philadelphia’s own Da Vinci Art Alliance from launching its Da Vinci Fest Live this October.
The festival, which will be both in person (starting Oct.11) and virtual (starting Oct. 22), is a celebration of the intersection of both the arts and sciences, and aims to showcase the city’s innovation, diversity and artistry.
The in-person portions of the festival will take place along Catharine street in South Philadelphia, and all will have a virtual component. All the exhibits will also be audio described in English, with some in Spanish.
Here is what is on the docket in the coming weeks.
The main attractions of Da Vinci Fest Live, there will be five professional art exhibitions set either outside along Catharine street, inside the Da Vinci Art Alliance (DVAA) or completely virtual on the festival’s website.
The in-person exhibits premier on Oct. 11, while the virtual ones become available on Oct. 22.
Philadelphia Forthcoming: An Endless Urban Portrait
This exhibit, which will appear in person inside Gallery 1 at DVAA (and virtually), is a collaboration between the nonprofit and students at Jefferson University’s College of Architecture and the Built Environment is a deep dive into Philadelphia’s architectural past and a peek at its potential future.
Anchored by PEW Fellow, Lisa Marie Patzer, the exhibit will feature a tabletop cityscape of Philadelphia, machine intelligence and a historic wallpaper installation to convey its message.
The Inquisitives: At the Intersection of Art & Science
In an exploration of the similarities between the artistic and scientific processes, six artists with backgrounds in science come together for an in-person exhibit at DVAA’s Gallery 2 that proves art and science aren’t that different.
An outdoor exhibit that will premier on Oct. 4 in Palumbo Park, Exquisite Copse, was organized by Philadelphia Sculptors and will feature 12 pieces of art appearing in bushes, hanging from trees and creeping along walkways.
Its form is an homage to both the spirit of Leonardo Da Vinci and the Surrealism and it will be available in person until Nov. 6.
This virtual-only exhibit will premier on Oct. 22 and features the portrait work of an AI robot named Henri.
The Astronomy of David Rittenhouse
Another virtual-only entry, this exhibit is a curated deep dive into the life of David Rittenhouse and his life as an astronomer, mathematician, clockmaker, and craftsman of scientific instruments.
In partnership with Mural Arts Philadelphia, the side of DVAA’s building will be adorned with a new mural by artists, Sammy Kovnat and Maria Roman, and will be dedicated at the in-person launch of exhibits on Oct. 11.
Jarrod Markman, executive director of DVAA, called the mural an “intersection of art and science communities within South Philly,” much in the vein of the overall event that is Da Vinci Fest Live!
In addition to science elements like a visual representation of an oxytocin molecule, the mural will also include a display of papel picado in honor of South Philly’s Mexican community.
Roman and Kovnat will also feature in a video as part of the festival’s The Hive (read more below), discussing how the mural came together and the community connectivity it communicates.
Participants in the Da Vinci Derby are tasked with designing a 7-inch block of wood into a car that will be raced on a custom track at DVAA on Oct. 22.
Voting is open now until Oct. 7 to pick the most creative car, which will also be announced on Oct. 22 with the actual winner of the race.
Philadelphia’s first woman sportscaster, Leslie Gudel, will be on hand to offer the play-by-play of the derby alongside Leroy Sibanda, who helped design the track.
The broadcast will take place at 6:30 p.m. on Oct. 22.
This portion of Da Vinci Fest Live will be all online, and offers opportunities for attendees to collect art and bid on items up to $500 to support local artists and businesses.
The Art Bazaar section of The Market will be for individual artists, where The Silent Auction will deal from local businesses and restaurants.
The Hive is Da Vinci Art Fest Live’s collection of curated video projects for attendees to experience.
The 18 videos range from Q&As with some artists involved in other parts of the festival to virtual lessons and discussions about the innovation and connectivity bred between art and science.
The entire list of Hive experiences is on Da Vinci Fest Live’s website.
The virtual festival will take place from Oct. 22 through Oct. 29.
The in-person launch is from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. at the Da Vinci Art Alliance on Oct. 11.