TREE + LEAF

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Fresh Paint on the Plaza

ART, GRAFFITI, PLAZA DISTRICTDusty GilpinComment

This weekend, Dylan Bradway, Tanner Frady, and myself added a few layers to the west side of Saints Pub in the Plaza District. The wall has been home to a mural for over a decade. Like all things, time has taken a toll and deteriorated what once was a bright piece of art. The wall faces the southwest sun and the light fastness of the color has faded, desaturating the image and cracking the paint. A public proposal and fundraising effort was made to repaint the wall with a fresh coat of paint and mural. Dylan Bradway was the head designer on the project and created preliminary drafts and concepts. He describes his initial intent, "The concept of this mural is to capture the visionary energy within the district with the use of bright colors, varying patterns and textures which have both an organic quality as well as geometric form. There is also the representation of an enlightened being in the mural which is meant to support the concept of visionary figures within the district as well as loosely tie into the name “Saints” which is the business on which the mural is located." Upon asking Tanner Frady and I to paint the mural, we decided to add a few words that we found directly reflected the district. The top of the mural reads; Fresh, Vision, Renew, Local, Thrive, and Dream. Although painting a giant graffiti mural would have been my desire, even I have to understand that this is most likely not in the general public's interest. We decided that including graffiti styling in the text would be okay, but that the words could somewhat mist into the background.

The original mural image was of a giant floating being holding a coffee cup flying above water, fish, and trees. Where Saints pub is today was once a coffee shop, and the community mural reflected the art of the community and the subject of what was inside of the building. Since the first mural was painted the district has evolved. The community's ideals have relatively stayed the same, but the faces have changed. The Plaza is an arts district where weird, strange, new, and different are to be welcomed with open arms. More murals need to be painted, and not just by Tanner Frady, Dylan Bradway and Dusty Gilpin. Murals need to be painted by YOU, the community. We three are a small portion of the district, we represent a collective of artists that gravitate torward eachother. The mural on Saints is one of many walls in the Plaza District. One of many canvases that can make the district vibrant, bright, and unique. I know the mural will not please everyone. There is no way that any piece of art will ever be able to represent or satisfy an entire community. However, while painting, I've never met as many enthusiastic residents of the surrounding neighborhoods. The subject, color, textures, technical application..et cetra can be debated and critiqued without end. The fact that the mural beneath the new layers of paint had deteriorated remains. The sun will bleach, the paint will fade, and like all murals, it's days are numbered. We're grateful for the community for letting us have a layer on this wall, and are anxious to see the evolving future of it and the district.