By Jesse Bertel

A group of 27 artists from Prescott, Phoenix, the Verde Valley, as well as California and Colorado, will show their paintings, prints, drawings, hand-made musical instruments and music videos at the exhibit. Featured artists include Michael Ananian, Joshua Broadbent, Gary Cassidy, Jeanne Ciravolo, Bernadette Craig, Ashley Darling, Joy Herhold, Tony Holmquist, Kenneth Kasten, Igal Kogan, Jacob Kravetz and the Make or Measure Collective, Gene Latour, Steve Mason, Marianne McCarthy, Richard McFaul, Nancy Mooslin, Keelin Miller, Amy Newton-McConnel, William Osborne III, John Romi, Eileen Roth, Steve Straussner, Carrie Scanga, Bear Schutz, Chenxi Shao and Mike von der Nahmer.

Darling, a local Prescott artist who has contributed three mixed media collage artworks, spoke with Across the Street ahead of the upcoming exhibit. The following interview was edited for length and clarity.

<strong>How did you get started as an artist?</strong>

I think I was just born an artist. Ever since I was little, I’ve made art out of something. I was really big into music as a child, more than the 2D arts. As I grew up, I realized that I was also really good at painting, really good at photography. I have a natural talent for 3D forms and sculpture. I realized at a young age that it was just a way to express emotions and process them. So, it’s just kind of been my coping mechanism and happiness in life. My whole life is just being able to express myself through art.

<strong>What do you enjoy most about creating mixed media?</strong>

It’s free to take on in any form as you’re working it. There are certain turns that might change your whole piece, which is quite different than if you stick with just one media. I think you tend to stick to a set of rules that go with the media, but when you mix them, you get to make the rules.

<strong>What would you say separates your work from other mixed media artists?</strong>

Because it’s so open, I think it’s a really good mirror of the artist itself. So, everyone who works in mixed media has their own style because it is uniquely them. The thing for mine, it comes forth in all of my different arts, is really whimsical and quite magical. I have kind of this crazy red hair. You’ll see whimsical red ‘floof’ come through to detect myself and my pieces. I think that people can see that and recognize that about my work and be like, I bet you that’s probably Ashley’s.

For more information about Ashley Darling’s work, visit

Jesse Bertel is a reporter/videographer for the Prescott News Network. Follow him on Twitter @ JesseBertel, email him at, or call 928-445-3333, ext. 2043.

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