During pandemic times when inside activities were scarce, artists struggled to share their art with the world.
Because Destiny Pinder-Buckley, Hannah Grapevine, and Rebekah Tuchscherer consider themselves artists of some variety, this simply wouldn’t do.
“We were all looking for a way to bring people together as more and more people are able to get vaccinated, and the idea kind of just came to us over coffee one morning,” said Grapevine.
Together, they created the Backartigans to make local art accessible, with Pinder-Buckley as the social media coordinator, Grapevine as art director, and Tuchscherer as communication and finance director.
From May to August, they planned to put up an art show once each month. Pinder-Buckley added that with enough interest, shows may continue into the winter months.
When they were coming up with the name of their new backyard art experience, The Backyardigans theme song would not leave Pinder-Buckley’s head. She said she just blurted out “Backartigans,” and it stuck. She said it fit their idea, “backyard, art, with a fun and playful theme.”
In May, the collection of art for sale ranged from jewelry to paintings, embroidery, photography, and more.
“We did not want to display only one style or type of art,” said Pinder-Buckley. “The variety was the best part of the show—there was a piece of art for anyone.”
The Backartigans opened up to 605, sharing more about the faces behind the events.
MY FAVORITE WAY TO SPEND LEISURE TIME IS… snuggling with my cats, reading a good book, or daydreaming about my future travels. I really want to backpack South America or Southeast Asia. (Or both.)
FOR ME, THE BEST PART OF SETTING UP THE BACKARTIGANS WAS… getting to connect with a variety of artists and learn more about their individual arts. I love learning about what inspires other people to create.
MY FAVORITE LOCAL COFFEE SHOP IS… The Breaks [Coffee Roasting Co]. I was obsessed with their coffee well before they opened their downtown location. Their bean juice is the best in town and gets my creativity flowing even when I’m low on sleep and motivation. I’m also probably the top buyer of their 64-ounce jugs of cold brew. I do not have a problem.
OUTSIDE OF BACKARTIGANS, I SPEND MOST OF MY TIME… making art, lounging in my hammock in the nearest park, or exploring local hiking trails.
MY FAVORITE PLACE TO FREQUENT IN SIOUX FALLS IS… Sanaa’s [Gourmet]. I’m there once a week (at minimum) to eat some of the best food in town.
MY STRONGEST TALENT IS... my ability to make anything—and I mean anything—gluten-free or vegan.
AROUND SIOUX FALLS, IT’S NEVER SURPRISING TO FIND ME… wherever local music is playing. I love Sioux Falls’ outdoor concerts and festivals during the summertime and always hit up as man as I can.
SOMETHING MANY PEOPLE DON’T KNOW ABOUT ME IS THAT… I have a pet rabbit that’s also a supporter of the arts. His name is TJ.
WHEN I’M NOT DEDICATING TIME TO BACKARTIGANS, I’M MOST LIKELY… on the hunt for agriculture and environmental news at the Argus Leader. In addition to organizing the Backartigans art shows, I’m also a full-time journalist and spend my days talking with local farmers, breaking news, and writing about South Dakota’s No. 1 industry.