The countdown to Afterglow 2018 is on! Join us in the coming weeks as we interview the artists participating in the festival. Check back often to learn about some of the great projects taking place this year.
Interview with Ashton Rodenhiser
Afterglow Art Festival Founder / Event Organizer
1. What is Afterglow 2018? Could you describe it? What is its inspiration?
The Afterglow Art Festival started in 2012, and was inspired by the desire to have more of a creative presence in Bridgewater, and particularly King Street. I had attended the Nocturne Art-at-Night Festival in Halifax, and when I moved back home to Lunenburg County, I wanted to use that as the model for creating Afterglow. The festival is very diverse in terms of art projects, and this is very intentional, as I want to expand people's mind of what art is. When a lot of people think of art, they think of visual art (for example, a painting hanging on the wall) and art and creativity is so much bigger than that, and such a larger scope. I want to encourage people to think about art and creativity in a diverse way.
2. Tell us a little bit about yourself, where you live, and your creativity.
I live in Upper Northfield. I call myself a dabbler when it comes to art creation. Throughout my life, I've tried many different mediums including acrylic, felting, collage, jewelery making, and most recently encaustic.
3. How do you feel Afterglow makes an impact on Bridgewater?
I'd like to think that Afterglow has an impact on helping change the narrative and story of how people perceive Bridgewater. For many years, it was viewed as a town that was more of an industrial or shopping destination, but the Festival Foundation really wanted to help create a view of the town where people see it in a more artistic and creative way. Because the Festival is contributing to the story of the town, one of the exciting things is that it can be a factor in why somebody might move here. Even just coming to the event can contribute to Economic Development. The Festival helps with Community Development by helping build a sense of place, and building on a place where people want to come work, live, and play.
4. Why have you chosen to take part in this year's festival?
The Festival has grown quite steadily since its inception in 2012, so as long as artists keep being interested in participating, and people keep wanting to attend the festival, then we would like to make it continue on!
5. What are you looking forward to most in this year's festival?
One thing that always really excites me every year is the diversity of the program. I'm excited for the Friday night act (which will be announced very shortly)! Even if someone has attended every year, each year is different in its own way, simply because of the artists that participate!
Interview and blog complied by Jordan Beck Crouse