San Rafael's 2009 Italian Street Painting Festival

Photos by Bruce Bagnoli


Script for Marinations segment: December 2009
San Rafael Italian Street Painting Festival

These pictures were taken at
San Rafael’s June 2009
Italian Street Painting Festival
brings the ephemeral art long practiced by the Madonnari  in Europe
 to bring delight eyes of some 60,000 visitors to our town.
Good food and good music help draw folks and benefit the programs of a local non-profit, Youth in Arts .

More than 200 pieces of art created by individual artists or
Teams of artists fill the Mission and “Bee” street Plaza
with brightly colored chalk and pastel paintings
 inspired by the renaissance painters, current events, and childhood fantasy.

Youth in Arts is a San Rafael non-profit that provides
 in-school and after-school arts instruction and performances
Youth in Arts serves over 20,000 preK-HighSchool students each year.

 It compensates for the arts programs that were dropped from public schools as taxpayer support for arts education declines.

This event is supported by dozens of local citizens and businesses, and brings lots of folks to the downtown.  It’s a boon to the local eateries as well.

Since the 16th Century, Italian artists have painted on the street,
 hoping to get contributions from those who pass by.

 The vagabond artists were called Madonnari since they often painted images of the Madonna in the plaza near a cathedral . 

The San Rafael festival attracts professional street painters,
local artists, amateurs and children
painting images that range in size from 6’x12’ down to miniatures.

Next summer,
 mark the second week of June on your calendar for an enjoyable Sunday  afternoon excursion in San Rafael..

  Marinations video segment first shown on Community Media Center of Marin Channel 26    

Additional Links:

2010 festival link:


Martinez September Event

Photos of some of the events:

Street Painting Society: