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Noisy Waters logo (small).png

August 18-20, 2023 | Bellingham, Washington

Widely acclaimed muralists gather in Bellingham, WA for a weekend of live painting, demos, music, parties and inspiration.  Artists will have three days to paint 8’x’8’ portable walls which will be auctioned off at the end of the event.


The general public will vote for their favorite pieces and the top four will receive cash contracts to paint large murals in central Bellingham!

Why "Noisy Waters"?  
The word “Whatcom” is derived from the Lhaq'temish word QwotQwem, which translates to “noisy water.” This festival aims to make noise in Bellingham by hosting a confluence of vibrant muralists and musicians.

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Please read our Noisy Waters Festival FAQ


2) Selected artists will receive a $500 stipend upon check-in to help defray their expenses.

3) Primed panels provided by Paper Whale. Artists bring own supplies.

4) Artists check-in and may begin setting up their tents at the festival site between 4-6 pm on Thursday (8/17/2023). This will be followed by a welcome reception hosted by Paper Whale. 

5) Painting times Fri 9:00 AM – 7:00 PM,  Saturday 9:00 AM – 7:00 PM, Sunday 9:00 AM to 2PM. All painting must be completed by Sunday, August 20 at 2:00 PM. Awards to follow. 

6) Paint 8ft x 8ft primed wall. 

7) No projectors or painting during off hours. Stencils OK.

9) Artist is responsible for lodging. Our team can provide assistance if requested. 

10) Recipients of commissions to be announced on Sunday 2:30.

12) Artist must be present to win

13) Artwork will be sold in an auction and artists will receive 70% of the sale. 




Sponsored by Industrial Credit Union on State Street

Selected by the Paper Whale Advisors, one artist will receive a premier mural commission with a local Bellingham, WA business of $10,000 (and possibly more) for the work.

Voted on by the residents and artists of Bellingham, WA

Commissioned work will not have to replicate the mural painted at the event; the muralist, Paper Whale, and business owner will collaborate on the theme for the murals. Artist and business owner will determine the installation timeframe. 

THIS YEAR’S THEME: "Make it Beautiful!"

Paintings from the festival will be auctioned off and the artists will be compensated a 70% commission.

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