Along with music, wine and fine foods, BottleRock 2015 visitors have a new attraction to check out this year – a series of murals painted on the exhibit hall walls at Napa Valley Expo.
By the time the festival opens Friday, artists Ian Ross, D Young V, JM Rizzi and Zio Ziegler will have completed outdoor murals on the walls of Chardonnay, Riesling and Zinfandel halls. Also on display this year are large-size sculptures from various artists.
The artists were invited to bring another element to the three-day festival, which may draw up to 100,000 people, organizers said.
“Right before our eyes, these artists are creating some amazing images that we think will add a totally new dimension,” Latitude 38 partner Justin Dragoo said last week as artist Ian Ross furiously painted a wall of Chardonnay Hall, perched on a cherry picker.
“It’s a great win-win partnership to have this kind of talent to be part of our festival,” said Dragoo, who declined to say how much stipend money the artists received for their effort. “We hope we can give them some exposure, given how many people that appreciate the finer things in life will be coming to BottleRock.”
Latitude 38 partner Jason Scoggins said the art adds “a lot of visual value to the festival grounds.”
The artists paint in vastly different styles. While Ross spray painted his mural in mostly black, white and silver colors, San Francisco-based Ziegler, who has painted murals for Facebook, Google and other major companies, used vivid orange, red, green, blue and other colors to create a mural on Chardonnay Hall.
Ross, who is inspired by nature in Marin County where he grew up and graffiti art, works with no set plans to create “organic shapes” people can view differently. “I like to be present, in the moment,” said Ross, 37.
“For me, it’s more interesting that art work can be lots of things to lots of people – not just one specific thing,” he said during a break.
Part of the fun, he said, is to create art on a scale “that’s much larger than a human being because it has a different impact on them.”
“There is nothing like this in Napa, for one,” he said. “And also this mural festival attracts a lot of good people, good eyes. It’s good exposure.”
Napa Valley Expo Chief Executive Officer Joe Anderson said the fair board may or may not decide to leave the murals after the festival is over. If the fair board does not want the murals, the festival organizers have agreed to repaint the walls.
Anderson was touring the Expo grounds with fair director Tom Trzesniewski, who said he would wait and see before making a decision. Trzesniewski would only say the artists used “some interesting colors.”
“There is a lot of take in there, don’t you think so?” he said.