Art Talk Monday: Holiday Arts Tour Call for Artists

Hello regional artists! Applications for this year's Holiday Arts Tour are open, and available for download at the bottom of the page in the "shared files" box. This year, there is a Business Application (for business sites on the tour); an Artist Application (which is also for Studio sites); and a Student Artist Application (for undergraduate university students.) Read the Art Talk below for more information, and get those applications in!

Holiday Arts Tour: Celebrating Tradition

by Jessica Slaughter, NCLAC Executive Director

This fall will be the North Central Louisiana Arts Council’s 15th Annual Holiday Arts Tour, titled Celebrating Tradition, to be held November 15-18. The Holiday Arts Tour is an exciting, arts-filled weekend that showcases the talent of our region’s visual, literary, and performing artists. The Holiday Arts Tour gives our artists the opportunity to exhibit and sell their artwork by partnering with downtown businesses and galleries or by opening their personal studios to the general public during the tour weekend.  The Tour promotes artistic discussion and exposure through live demonstrations, performances, exhibitions, and sales.  Visual and literary arts are highlighted each day, and musical performances are showcased in the evenings.

The Tour begins on Thursday this year, as we are partnering with the City of Ruston and its annual Holiday Open House.  This delightful evening will focus on the downtown area and highlight not only our artists but our local businesses. Merchants will have snacks and shopping, the city will have Santa and music at Railroad Park, and NCLAC will have artists spread throughout for one-of-a-kind shopping opportunities. As the weekend progresses, musical acts will be added to the line-up, in addition to the opening of artists’ studios. Sprout Sunday will be back this year, with free kids’-related activities and art demonstrations at participating studio sites.

This beloved event is part of NCLAC’s Cultural Economy Initiative programming, as it demonstrates our investment in the economic future of our community. The Tour helps turn creativity into sales, it markets our strengths, it makes culture an industry, and helps grow Ruston as a cultural destination. Last year, many participating downtown business owners not only reported higher traffic through their spaces but also increased sales for both themselves and the artists with whom they partnered.  The 2011 Holiday Arts Tour had a total estimated economic impact of $75,000, not counting NCLAC’s expenses in presenting the Tour.  As a non-profit, proud to serve the five parishes of Lincoln, Bienville, Claiborne, Union and Jackson, we strive to promote our region’s talent and keep our business local.

Applications are now being accepted for businesses and galleries to participate as Tour sites, and for artists and studios to exhibit. Please visit our website-; our blog-; or call our office - 255-1450, for more information. Join the fun this holiday season, and celebrate tradition with us!