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ArtFest returns for 2nd successful show

Collegian | Ruby Secret | Collegian
Professor Elnaz Javani guides students on how to create textile designs at Colorado State University’s second annual Artfest Sept. 28. “It’s been great, people are exploring all kinds of stamp painting and creating their own textile designs,” Javani said.

For most Colorado State University students and faculty members, Sept. 28 was just another Thursday. However, for the Visual Arts Building, classes were canceled for an all-day event of food, art and booths.

Last year was the department of art and art history’s first time holding ArtFest. As a result of the positive response from those who attended, they decided to make it an annual event as a way to get students involved and inspire more creativity in the community.


“I love ArtFest so much,” said Carrigan Grow, a visual arts student at CSU. “This event just helps all art students feel like we are a part of a community.”

Hosting ArtFest in the Visual Arts Building ensured accessibility for the students who wanted to participate, so classes in the building were canceled for the day to make space for the event. Grow and her friends came to ArtFest together to visit the booths and discover programs and future career opportunities as well as participate in the creative activities taking place in different classrooms.

“I think the arts department here is very collaborative instead of competitive, which I know a lot of other art schools might be more competitive,” Grow said. “I feel like this emphasizes the collaboration and community in the arts and just seeing what everyone else is up to and encouraging each other.”

The department provided tables full of food for students and faculty to enjoy and sectioned off classrooms for creative craft areas. Students were able to visit booths lining the hallways catered to art majors’ current interests and future career goals. Booths varied from career opportunities and study abroad programs to art clubs to join and students selling their art.

One of the many booths featured was headed by Marius Lehene, a professor of drawing at CSU, who shared study abroad opportunities with students. The booth provided information on programs in places such as Italy and Japan.

“It’s a way for us to get our programs out to all students and not just art majors, you know?” Lehene said. “Everyone is welcome.”

In the classrooms, students were able to create their own stamp paintings by manufacturing original textile designs to hang to dry on the wall. This was then followed up by ironing to make it more functional.

“It’s been great; people are exploring all kinds of stamp painting,” said Elnaz Javani, an assistant professor and the head of the fiber area at CSU who spent her day guiding people on how to create these designs. “It’s been amazing. This is my first ArtFest. … I love it, and I had a chance to walk around and explore other areas, and everyone is doing lots of fun things.”

The diverse and creative style of ArtFest fostered an environment where students could shop their classmates’ art, learn about new programs they can get involved with and create new kinds of art. The event also provided an opportunity for students to network by talking with professors and other students while enjoying some complimentary food.


While many different departments put together creative fairs to get their students involved, ArtFest is one that students and faculty alike get to participate in and look forward to.

Reach Ruby Secrest at or on twitter @CSUCollegian.

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