Big Art showcases blue moon at new venue

Nate Lessler

Whitman College’s annual literary arts magazine blue moon will be having its largest annual publicity event this Friday, Nov. 12. The event, known as Big Art, will occur at a new venue and involve live music, refreshments and a gallery of student artwork.

“It’s basically a publicity event; at the same time it’s to showcase the previous year’s magazine,” said blue moon editor-in-chief senior Lara Mehling. “It comes out so late in the school year that there’s not really a chance have any activities except for the release party . . . we kind of try to almost get more mileage out of [the previous edition of] the magazine and use [the event] as publicity so people know about submissions and what the magazine is about.”

This is the first year the event will take place at The Underground, a nearby venue which rents itself out for concerts and other events. Big Art will not only consist of live readings by writers previously published in blue moon, but will also involve a silent auction of large prints of artwork published in blue moon. Postcards of these art pieces will also be available for 50 cents. The event will also feature live music by the student bands The Bachmann Sextet and  Chastity Belt, as well as free treats and coffee from the Patisserie, which is located adjacent to The Underground.

Although the venue of Big Art has changed most years, the change this year was due to a switch in ownership of Merchants (now known as Olive), where the event was held last year.

“With the renovations at Olive, I thought the space wasn’t as convenient anymore,” said Mehling. “I went to Olive initially and expected they would be okay with doing it again but the new owner wasn’t interested so I had to find a new place . . . Whenever there are cafes opening and closing in Walla Walla and the ownership changes, the location of the event changes. It hasn’t really been one regular location.”

The new location will furnish the event with more of a gallery-like style. And even though the event is no longer taking place in a public space, Mehling hopes the public will still attend.

“I’m not sure what [the turnout] will be,” said Mehling. “The room is not huge but it’s a three hour event and it’s on a Friday night, and it’s open to the public and it’s free, so I’m hoping it will be pretty full.”

Blue moon staff member sophomore Sonya Fabricant, who has been working to advertise the event, displayed her confidence about the amount of people who would show up.

“I think the turnout is going to be really good because it’s just such a unique event . . . in that it brings together the artistic and writing communities as well as a lot of outside students who otherwise may not be interested in blue moon . . . and I think it’s going to be just downright fun,” said Fabricant.

Big Art will occur from 7-10 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 12. The event is free and open to the public.