Donation turns artists' negative into a positive

Donation turns artists' negative into a positive

BAY ST. LOUIS, MS (WLOX) - Some coast artists say some good will come out of those horrific storms that swept through the Coast last weekend and put a damper on at least two major outdoor events: The Ohr Okeefe Art Festival in Biloxi and the 'GOAL' Crawfish Cook-off In Waveland. Many of the metal and canvas tents twisted and mangled during the severe weather will be used to help struggling artists.

Artist Dani Davis was one of those affected by Mother Nature's fury.

"The rain started coming down and my fiance said, 'I'm going to the tent to make sure the money box is put up and taken out in case everything gets really bad. Next thing I knew, he was inside the tent when the tent collapsed... the tent next to us was picked up by the wind and drove into our tent," explained Davis.

The silver-lining to her story is many of the damaged tents have been donated to the Bohemian Art Gallery in Old Town Bay St. Louis. It's an art co-op that is shared by more than 20 artists.

"An artist or an exhibitor without a tent, they're out of business until they can afford to buy another tent. And tents run around $200 a piece," said artist Kathleen Johnson.

Some of the damaged tents will be refurbished and given away to budding artists. The rest will be stripped and the pieces stored away for parts for future use by any coast artist.

"They use them to hang art from, they use them for protection from the rain, they use them for protection from the sun. The tent is their marketing platform and without them, they are lost," Johnson said.

If you're are a local artist and need tent parts, you can pick them up at the Bohemian Art Gallery at 209 Main Street in Bay St. Louis on Saturdays.

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