This well-known fitness event is adding an unexpected art competition to this year's festivities.
There is an event in the Columbus area that combines art and sports. “Art At The Arnold is a three day art competition using athletes as models and the Arnold Sports Festival as a backdrop,” Kevin Buckland, co-chair of Art At The Arnold, says. The event is going to happen from March 1-3, 2019 at the Greater Columbus Convention Center, with the help of a small group of volunteers that assist with putting the event together each year. The Art At The Arnold will be celebrating its 10th event next year.
The inspiration behind starting the event has come from an appreciation for art and athletics. “It’s all about the beauty of the athletic form,” he says. To prepare for the event, there is “a considerable amount of promotion to attract new artists,” Buckland says. “Planning goes into retaining athletic models, how our space is laid out and sponsorships.”
New things that are going to be happening are the different athletes that come to be considered for modeling. “We are always looking for ways for our artists to have a new experience every year. The weekend has over 80 sporting events for the artists to get inspired by,” he says. “You never know what personalities will show up to view the creations.” They have had Arnold Schwarzenegger and Sylvester Stallone come to the event in the past.
There are a variety of talented artists who come to the event to do art. “Over the course of the weekend, there will be about 100 pieces of sports-oriented artwork created onsite,” Buckland says. “Weekend visitors can watch the artists create.” The artists use a full spectrum of mediums to create their art, and they include: pencil, charcoal, acrylic, oils, watercolor and there are even a couple sculptures.
The premise of the event has come from Ancient Greeks. “The Ancient Greeks had artists depicting sporting events back in ancient times,” Buckland says. “We have some of the best physiques in the world and the world’s largest sporting event right here in Columbus, Ohio. Combining an artist competition and sports is a winning combination.”
Buckland’s favorite part of the event is being around the action and excitement of the event. “Over 200,000 attendees in three days, 20,000 athletes that compete in over 80 sporting events,” he says. “Art At The Arnold has 50 artists competing. We have the honor of being the smallest event of the sports weekend. The athletes and artists are all amazing in their own individual way.”