Taking It To The Streets

If you are a local artist, the Town of Taos wants you!

In order to highlight Taos as an arts destination, celebrate and support the abundant creativity of our local artists and art scene, give visibility to our array of art, and delineate & beautify the historic district – the Town of Taos is seeking local Taos artists’ artwork for a lamppost banner campaign that will hang from April 1 thru October 31, 2018 within town limits. It is our goal to feature a diverse set of artists currently living and working within Taos County, while welcoming visitors to Taos and the Historic District.

So reads the eblast sent out early this week by the Town, calling for entries for Taos Lampost Banner Art Competition 2018, January 2nd to January 21st 2018.

I contacted Gina Azzari, Graphic Designer, owner of 3 Bean Studio (and an integral part of Taos Marketing Director, Karina Armijo’s team) and the manager of this project, and asked her to tell us a bit about herself, the work she does with Karina and the Town, and this competition. What follows is an informal Q&A conducted via email.

1) Gina can you tell us a bit about yourself, how long you’ve been here in Taos, and where you came here from?

I grew up in the San Fernando Valley, Los Angeles, finished college in San Francisco, and moved to Taos twenty-four years ago. I have an art, painting and design background, and in 1994 opened Stone Soup Graphics in Taos which I ran out of my earthship, having brought clients with me from California, many in the entertainment industry, gained through family connections. Since then I sold the earthship, built a passive-solar home in Cañon, got married and divorced, and had a daughter, who is now a sophomore at Taos High School. In 2001 I bought FX-18 Gifts & Jewelry which I ran, loved art directing and doing the buying for, and sold in 2010. Working as an independent designer while running the shop and raising a child, I officially opened 3 Bean Studio Graphics early 2015. Over time I built up my client list to include: Town of Taos Marketing & Tourism Department, Enchanted Circle Marketing Coop, The Harwood Museum of Art / UNM, The Couse Foundation and The Paseo Project. I design logo/identity/branding; exhibit titling and materials; print media including display ads, brochures, guides, maps invitations, postcards, posters, and business cards; digital banner ads for websites and social media. In fact, I am actually very lucky to have access to techniques like print embelishment and machines that enable you to booklet bind for example. The print technology of the current day and age is varied and allows printers and publishers to really explore their field! I am currently working on exhibit materials for the Work by Women exhibit at the Harwood opening in February, guest co-curated by Janet Webb & Judith Kendall. Clients looking to expand their promotional materials within the printed medium might look towards professional printers like Printivity to produce high quality printed media for them.

2) Your background in Art/Graphic Design is what brought you to Karina’s attention and you are currently an important part of her rockin’ team – please tell us a little about what you do?

II met Karina Armijo in the late 90s through a mutual friend – both of us were graphic designers at the time. Once she became Director of Marketing and Tourism for the Town of Taos, she hired me first for an Enchanted Circle Marketing Cooperative campaign, and for intermittent projects for the Town in 2016, eventually contracting me on an ongoing basis for the Town Marketing & Tourism Department beginning Spring 2017. Town projects include branding updates, print and digital banner advertising, like on Custom Water Bottles to hand out, and miscellaneous cooperative campaigns with the State Tourism Department and others. I am proud to be among several local women on Karina’s team, and am thrilled for the ongoing working relationship with the Town.

3) This is an awesome project and I’m so happy to share it with my readers, please tell us more about it, and how you think it will impact the way visitors see Taos?

In the Summer of 2017, Karina conceived the idea of a lamppost banner campaign, which I have been asked to manage. The campaign has been 5+ months in the making, evolving over time as it has been presented at public meetings and adjusted. After much consideration, it was decided that this time around, the Town would feature living local artists and highlight Taos as not only an arts destination, but as a haven for living, working artists and home to a vibrant, diverse art scene. Not only does Taos hold dear an incredible history of the arts, we want to reinforce to visitors and our own citizens that Taos is currently a living, breathing community of amazingly creative and talented artists deserving of honor, recognition, and visibility. It is our hope that the banners will beautify Paseo, tie the historic district together, while welcoming visitors on their approach. We are excited to be officially in the Call For Entry period now through January 21st, 2018. Jurying begins immediately following, and selections will be announced early February. Banners will hang April 1 – October 31, 2018. In addition to the 41 banners hanging on Paseo Sur & Norte, there will be 18+ invited artists that will hang in the Plaza (and other downtown side streets, to be determined). There will be a reception at Town Hall on April 6, featuring reproductions of the banners, and promotions and features of artists and their work throughout the campaign. For competition details, requirements and downloadable entry form, see taos.org/CallForEntries

Thanks Gina!

Gina Azzari, Graphic Designer and owner of 3 Bean Studio Graphics, can be reached at g.e.azzari@gmail.com

For questions or inquiries about the Lamppost Banner project, email: TaosIsArt@gmail.com

Call For Entries is open now through January 21st, 2018

Images c/o Gina Azzari