The City of West Fargo is excited to announce the three selected artists for COLOR FEST taking place 10 a.m. – 4 p.m., Saturday, April 17. Sheyenne Street will close from First Avenue W. to Third Avenue W. to paint the murals of artists Nicole Gagner, Leigh Nelson and Lesley Buegel on the intersections. Art and food vendors will fill in the rest of the roadway during the event.
Event attendees will not only be able to watch the artists work but they will be able to assist the artists in painting their designs. The City of West Fargo will supply all paint and materials. The artwork will remain on The Yards on Sheyenne intersections until the streets are replaced for the area’s reconstruction project in phase 2 and 3. To view the selected street artwork designs, please visit the COLOR FEST website (https://www.westfargond.gov/1139/COLOR-FEST).
The City of West Fargo will release updates and an alternative plan if weather conditions or COVID-19 changes prohibit the event from safely occurring.
About the artists
Nicole Gagner is an artist living and working in Bismarck, North Dakota. She studied in Georgia and California and has traveled extensively painting and drawing around the world, including Utah, New Zealand and at a Voices of the Wilderness Artist Residency in Selawik, Alaska. Gagner is delighted to be living and working on the northern prairies again. She works as a teaching artist with a wide variety of students of all ages and abilities.
More information about Nicole’s artwork can be found at PainterNicole.com, or follow @PainterNicole on Instagram and Facebook to see what she is up to next.
After Leigh Nelson's first published illustration in Sports Illustrated for Kids did not earn her any royalties, Leigh Nelson knew a path towards graphic design was inevitable when a high school teacher commended her Microsoft Paint skills. After graduating with a B.S. in design technology and a minor in visual arts from Bemidji State University, Leigh spent several years working in agency and corporate settings before taking a permanent leave of absence.
Nelson spent the next chapter of her life dedicated to working with people – particularly youth, exploring and living in various parts of the world. Returning to Minnesota and obtaining her master’s in education, Nelson works in youth development and spends her free time redefining her creative pursuits through various mediums. Inspiration for most of her work is found in the ordinary significance of life itself.
LesleyAnne was born and raised in the Fargo-Moorhead area. She first got into painting as a child after the children's book The Legend of the Indian Paintbrush inspired her. In 2017, she took a painting class with local artist Mike Marth, and rekindled her love for visual arts. Her work is inspired from her exploration and curiosity of both the physical outer world and her inner spiritual world.
After graduating from Moorhead High School in 2017, she moved to Dunedin, New Zealand to study media, film, and communications at the University of Otago. After graduating in 2018, she backpacked through Europe with her sister, and returned to Fargo to nanny for a year. Lesley currently lives in Downtown Fargo. Buegel currently works full time at Folkways and the Red River Market, and paints in her spare time.