Lubbock Arts Festival draws hundreds of artists, millions of dollars to Hub City

Lubbock Arts Festival coming this weekend

LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - The 41st Annual Lubbock Arts Festival, organized by the Lubbock Arts Alliance, is set for April 13-14 at the Lubbock Memorial Civic Center. Around 150 artists from around the country are expected to be a part of what is considered the largest fine arts event in West Texas.

“If you have an event that’s been going on for 41 years, that definitely shows the level of community support,” Executive Director Elizabeth Regner said. “The fact that the community is receptive to the arts, it keeps bringing these artists from all across the nation back to our event.”

The theme of this year’s festival is “Superheroes!” Regner told KCBD that the recent resurgence of films based on comic books prompted that theme.

“The thing about comic books, that’s the basis for all of the movies that you see now,” Regner said. “Art for comics actually starts as a page that people draw and put words to. Based upon that, you see them turned into the movies and that sort of thing. What we are doing here at the arts festival is we actually have the comic books, some of the renderings from those comic books and that’s how we are bringing superheroes to Lubbock.”

Photographers, painters, jewelers and other artists are expected to display art. Some of it will be for sale. There will also be demonstrations of art being made. Actors, singers and dancers will also be performing.

Benna Ellis will be the featured artist at the festival. She has been a glass artist for about 20 years.

“There’s not very many of us,” Ellis said. “It’s very unique. It’s beautiful. The colors are great. That’s what draws me in. I love color.”

Ellis told KCBD that it’s nice to be recognized in this way. She also says the festival is a great way to see the work of other artists.

“Lubbock itself has a tremendous amount of very talented artists but this is kind of nice because it pulls in from all over the place," Ellis said. "We get to see somebody else’s art besides our own. It’s nice.”

That convergence of artists, art enthusiasts and other consumers has brought an economic boost to Lubbock each year. A recent economic impact study by Americans for the Arts showed Lubbock art to have contributed around $100 million to the local economy in 2017. The Lubbock Arts Festival alone was shown to have generated $1.2 million in just two days.

“The fact that the Arts Festival is held at the Lubbock Memorial Civic Center, it’s a public venue for everyone to come to,” Regner said. “I think the other thing that makes the Arts Festival accessible to the public is the admission rate. It’s $4 for adults and children 12 and under are free.”

For more information about the Lubbock Arts Festival, click here.

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