Chalk the Block (CTB) was not always the big monster that it is now. The event started in 2008 as a one-day sidewalk chalk art competition featuring twelve artists that took place at Arts Festival Plaza. After receiving overwhelming support for the event, organizers from the City of El Paso- Museums & Cultural Affairs Department and the El Paso Community Foundation quickly realized that the event needed to expand to enhance the experience.

Since its inception, CTB has quickly become one of El Paso’s premiere events and the largest FREE three-day public arts festival in the Southwest region drawing over 40, 000 people annually. In 2019, CTB is celebrating 12 years of reimagining downtown El Paso through the power of art while providing an “out of this world” experience for its attendees.

Each year, about 200 local, national and international artists from all disciplines participate at CTB creating a fun, quirky and diverse environment for people of all ages to enjoy. The event features: temporary interactive art installations, live dance and theatrical performances, a sidewalk chalk art competition, live bands, art and food vendors, access to various activities and exhibits at both the El Paso Museum of Art and Museum of History and more!


Each year Chalk the Block hosts local, national and international temporary art installations, live chalk artists, dancers, and performers. Art can be perceived as something that is only viewed in a setting where interaction is not necessarily encouraged. At CTB attendees are engaged all the senses are potentially triggered simultaneously. From large to small scale installations, all CTB art experiences are sure to leave a mark.

Sidewalk Chalk Art Competition

CTB’s sidewalk chalk art competition is the reason why we exist. The competition has gone from 12 chalk artists in 2008 to 50+ artists in 2019. The chalk artists will be working on the Pedestrian Pathway between the convention center and the ballpark. 

Student Artists
Emerging Artists
Showcase Artists


Creation and execution: Lateral Office and CS Design | Production: Quartier des Spectacles Partnership – Montreal, Canada

Impulse is a publicly activated light and sound experience. The project uses the idea of repetitive units of subtle light and sound that can be played by the public to create a temporal, ever‐changing event. Impulse will transform a section of the Downtown Arts District into a space of urban play through a series of interactive illuminated see-saws that respond and transform when put into motion by people. Impulse will be an ever-changing urban composition and urban instrument, in which city dwellers are the musicians and artists.

Paradox Pyramid:
Laura Turon – El Paso, Juarez

Paradox Pyramid is an abstract pyramid that combines sculpture, art installation and interactive art. Visitors have the opportunity to engage with the environment, take selfies and pictures. Paradox drawing can be described as a drawing that creates an optical illusion presenting a two-dimensional figure through a drawing system that creates a three-dimensional looking pattern or shape.

Mural Walk:
Curated by Kalavera Culture Shop

Kalavera Culture Shop is bringing back a Chalk the Block favorite. Local, national and international artists will transform blank walls throughout the footprint into murals providing artists opportunities to engage with the community.

Stroll through the festival to check out these artists at work:

  • Vyal, Los Angeles
  • It’s A Living, New York
  • Glossblack, Philadelphia
  • Voodoo, El Paso
  • Martin “Blaster” Zubia, El Paso
  • Beto “Dec” Hernández, El Paso
  • Jesus “Cimi” Alvarado, El Paso

Creation : Thomas Voillaume et Florian Girardot | Co-Production : Illuminart (Montreal), Fête des Lumières de Lyon, Fées d’hiver

A sculpture that becomes everybody’s face.

A true interactive installation, Face is a video-mapped sculpture that allows the user to play with their own identity. The video mapping captures people’s faces and maps them onto the sculpture in real-time. Face is an installation that questions the spectators about control of their own identities in our net society 2.0.

Chalk it Out:
Angel Cabrales – El Paso

Chalk it Out is an installation featuring four foot by ten-inch pieces of chalk. Visitors are encouraged to play, write or take selfies with the interactive pieces. The oversized nature of this installation will encourage festival-goers to work together to draw pictures or write messages.

El Paso /Las Cruces

Odd-Lab is a local manipulation and circus arts troupe specializing in fire arts and LED entertainment featuring award-winning performers, based out of El Paso, Texas and Las Cruces, New Mexico.  Odd-Lab is best known for its large-scale fire productions and innovation in prop design.  This year, Odd-Lab is joining forces with Academy of Aerial Fitness for the creation of a carnival-themed aerial acrobatics show with signature Odd-Lab fire elements at night.  Don’t miss out on all the oddities throughout the evening and stop by our headquarters to say hello!


Hungry Castle, Installation: “Laser Cat” 

Artist and founder of Hungry Castle of Barcelona, Dave (aka Danger) is known for combining public art and fashion with his unique creative vision. He loves the strange, the beautiful and creating larger than life projects. The Internet is his muse. Constantly searching for new ways of thinking, Dave strives to make cool stuff happen around the world.

Laser Cat is gigantic feline-shaped art installation that projects the personal projects of professional creatives through its laser-beam eyes. The art incorporates the elements of performance, stage production and art creating an out of this world experience. FEED LASER CAT!!!

Maximo Gonzalez, Installation: “Walk Among Worlds”

Originally from Argentina and now Mexican artist, Maximo Gonzalez, has participated in a total of 117 group and 39 solos exhibitions around the world. He has showcased his work “Magnificent Warning” here in El Paso at the UTEP Stanlee & Rubin Center. His works stem all the all medias using a variety materials.

“Walk Among Worlds” explores the effects of light and lightness, looking for a cultural reflection on political division of the world. The installation, originally composed of 7,000 units that represent the 7,000 millions of inhabitants of the planet, is entirely made of inflatable balls.

Alice Farley Dance Theatre, Performances: “Imaginarium”

Alice Farley Dance Theatre is a New York based company that creates theatre of gesture transformation for both indoor and outdoor settings. Alice Farley des this through costuming, illusion, puppetry, stilts and circus skills. They have performed all over the world including Bangkok, Singapore, Quebec and Toronto.

Alice Farley Dance Theatre brings “Imaginarium” to CTB and will engage attendees with a variety of original characters and will make them feel like they have been transported to a magical world of fantasy.

Los Dos, Installation: “Stargazer”

STARGAZER is a unique piece commissioned by the Museums & Cultural Affairs Department (MCAD) specifically for Chalk the Block 8. The piece will be a large-scale 16 –18 foot inflatable installation that is currently being manufactured by the makers of the Macy’s parade inflatables. The picture above is an example of the series of characters created by Los Dos. STARGAZER will take similar form but you have to be present to see the piece in full effect.

American Institute of Architects, Installation

AIA Pavilion is a concept initiated by the El Paso Chapter of the American Institute of Artists designed by EPCC and Texas Tech School of Architecture students. A weaving element of the piece will call for attendee participation. When completed it will create a visually appealing appealing experience both in the daytime and evening hours. Experience it for yourself.