On October 14 and 15, while Covenant students enjoyed a well-earned Fall Break, St. Elmo hosted the first ever Incline Art Crawl. The Art Crawl, free to the public, is a pop-up art gallery along the lower portion of the Incline Railway. With Lookout Mountain as a backdrop, the artwork is surrounded by beautiful October foliage, making the event all the more enjoyable.
Strategically set up along Old Mountain Road, a small road that curves by bottom of the Incline Railway, the gallery allowed passengers to view the work while enjoying their ride. After they got off the Railway, they could purchase art and also explore St. Elmo. Visitors to the Art Crawl were provided with an Art Crawl Passport, a booklet full of discounts from a variety of St. Elmo businesses.
Elizabeth Miller, the creative visionary behind the Incline Art Crawl, posted an open call to all artists via social media encouraging them to submit their projects, both visual and performance related, by October 1. At least 40 local artists responded and participated in the Art Crawl. The gallery was juried to ensure quality work (hence the October 1 deadline), but overall the event hoped to welcome amateur artists. Miller encouraged artists of all ages and experience to participate. Because there was no fee to set up an exhibit and 100% of profits went directly to the artists, it was the perfect opportunity to gain exposure.
The Art Crawl included not only paintings and sketches, but also handmade furniture and baskets, upcycled work, clothing designs, and even music and performance art. The artwork combined Appalachian culture and urban Chattanooga, representing St. Elmo’s unique setting. Rather than having one central theme, the gallery presented a diverse array of projects.
Miller, a local creator with a passion for culture and art, envisioned the Art Crawl as a way to connect tourists to St. Elmo businesses. She wanted the art to provide them with a taste of St. Elmo culture, while also giving artists exposure. Miller plans to make the Incline Art Crawl a biannual event. Covenant students can participate in future Art Crawls, adding their voices to this celebration of culture while gaining exposure and selling artwork.