Marin Arts & Culture MAC_JUNE_upload - Page 13

I f you haven’t experienced the magic of street painting—seeing amazing works of art created right in front of your eyes by skilled artists using colored chalk right on the pavement—don’t miss Italian Street Painting Marin in San Rafael on June 27-28. This year’s theme is the Summer of Love, and will feature more than 100 Madonnari (chalk artists), live music by several bands (expect psychedelic), including David LaFlamme of ‘60s band, It’s a Beautiful Day, a Rare Artist Gallery, featuring work by EveryLife Foundation for Rare Diseases contest winners, a Flower Children’s Avenue for kids to do art, and a special appearance and show by iconic ‘60s rock poster artist, Stanley Mouse. It will be an extravaganza of all things art, Italian and love. “I’ve really had a wonderful, amazing career,” exclaims Kevin Marlatt, Executive Director of Italian Street Painting Marin, who has worked with many major arts organizations nationwide. He took over the helm of this colorful event in 2016, and is putting the final touches on the upcoming 2017 fair, coming up on June 24-25. Marlatt, 57, was born and raised in in upstate New York, but the family moved to Boulder, Colorado, where he attended high school. He went to college on a football scholarship, but became interested in political science, and chose that for his degree. He moved to Washington, D.C. and interned on Capital Hill under Senator Gary Hart, and then moved to Boston where he worked for the mayor. After a round of mid-level management positions, Marlatt took a position as a project manager with the New England Foundation for the Arts in Cambridge. “I had always drawn and painted and was a musician, but I never really considered myself going into the arts,” he says. But working for an arts organization for the first time turned out to be the perfect fit. “I loved the work,” says Marlatt. “I felt like I could do more positive work in that field than in politics—the arts and education were truly something I found a passion for later in life.” Around 2000, Marlatt moved to the Bay Area and got involved with the San Francisco arts scene. His first position was with the San Francisco Opera, where he ran their Western Opera Theater touring program. He Genna Panzarella creator of the poster artwork, and iconic poster artist Stanley Mouse. Photo by Terry Peck. went on to be become the director of education, and put programs together that brought kids from all over the city to the opera house, and gave them a backstage view of the performing arts. “Opera is a really wonderful venue for education, because there’s so many different elements that kids can latch onto,” says Marlatt. “If they’re not into the music, they might be into the costuming or the makeup or the stagecraft.” Although he wasn’t looking for another job, Marlatt got recruited by Ruth Felt, the founder and president of San Francisco Performances to be their artist services and education director. He spent the next two seasons doing all the booking, artist management and education programs. “That’s when I really got to know people like Yo-Yo Ma and Wynton Marsalis,” says Marlatt enthusiastically. “I was just working with this amazing talent every night.” Next stop for Marlatt was at Stanford Lively Arts, where he spent three years doing education programs. In the late ‘90s, attracted by the booming economic “bubble” in Silicon Valley, he left the field briefly to work at Intel, booking keynote speakers for conferences. But the for-profit world did not resonate with him like the nonprofit one. “The money was good, but it just didn’t fit,” says Marlatt. “It wasn’t my tribe.” After a short, hiatus, Marlatt returned to the arts, and became the dean at the Oakland School for the Arts, (one of Jerry Brown’s programs). He also wrote the MARIN ARTS & CULTURE 13