Murals to Remind us of July 4th Independence

Happy Fourth of July!! I’m posting early because I just realized that my post didn’t run on schedule last week.  I’ll get it ready for the following week. This will be a quick post, as I know you must have picnics to prepare and or celebration plans for this Independence Day.

Just a few murals worth mentioning that should remind us of our American ideals and our ongoing patriotic effort to maintain freedom.

Joe Davis is retired? I don’t think so — painting murals keeps him busy and he must love to do it. I worry about balance as I get older…;)

Fouke_eagle mural_Texarkana Gazette, as seen on Art Is Everywhere

Look closely, these murals was made with people — more likely all Americans.

human statue of liberty via Pundit Kitchen, as seen on Art Is Everywhere

political-pictures-world-war-i-living-mural-eagle via Pundit Kitchen, seen on ArtIsEverywhere

political-pictures-world-war-i-living-mural-liberty-bell via Pundit Kitchen, seen on ArtIsEverywhere

Rethinking Your Impression of Wall Murals

I found this blog post that I really like and then I realized that it was all based on the opposite premise of blown up “wall murals.” The post suggested that “most wall murals and decals are pretty cheesy.” Actually, as an artist, decorative painter, muralist and general consumer, I agree; primarily because they are all mostly mass-produced enlarged photo murals, large scale graphics or solid circles stickers, etc. . Most of us don’t want to see these on our walls, especially long term. The DIY Wall Murals post from PW Style displays some pretty cool wall murals as examples, like these.

Wishflower mural_via PWstyle, as seen on Art Is Everywhere

I love wish flowers and this next one reminds me of Rousseau. These both require considerable effort to create — all hand-painted.

Tropical mural_via PWstyle, as seen on Art Is Everywhere

The author may not have realized that there is wallpaper out there that is removable and reusable, can be temporary or long lasting and mimics the hand-painted look, because they are originally hand-painted or illustrated.

flower mural_via PWstyle, as seen on Art Is Everywhere

This large scale flower mural reminds me of our Flower Power Casart wallcovering, which happens to be on sale right now on One Kings Lane!

Casart Flower Power wallcovering, as seen on Art Is Everywhere

Casart coverings can give an impression of a mural or art for your walls = Casa + art, which is Casart. If you want a more geometric look, we also have stripes now on the One Kings Lane sale as part of Domino magazine’s Enliven Your Walls event. If you head over to my other Slipcovers for Your Walls blog you can see the demonstration we did at High Point, using stripes in unconventional ways.

I like the illustrated style of this birch mural featured on PW Style.

Birch mural_via PWstyle, as seen on Art Is Everywhere

It reminds me of our Birds & Birch design that comes in 16 different color combinations.

 I moved this post from it’s regular mid-week Wednesday slot to post on Mural Mondays so could also receive this in time of our One Kings Lane sale before it ends on Thursday @ 11am. Don’t blink….

Another post is forthcoming this Wednesday.

Collaborative Projects

It’s pretty inspirational to me to see projects that come together based on innovation, talent and public participation.

When I first saw this mural, I thought I recognized the unique stylistic hand of C.F. Payne, one of my favorite contemporary illustrators, but with all the scaffolding in front and even with the resource post, Mural, mural on the wall by Soapbox Media, it seemed unclear and I wasn’t sure I understood. After several reads now I see, or at least I think I understand the background and how it has come together.

Singing Mural by CF Payne_Photo by Scott-Beseler of Social Media, as seen on Art Is Everywhere

Singing Mural by CF Payne - Photo by Scott-Beseler of Social Media

This Singing Portrait Mural is by C.F. Payne, who’s not known as a muralist, but MuralWorks in Cincinnati (a public art sub-branch of ArtWorks) has painted it in collaboration and according to C.F. Payne’s illustration. This is what I like about ArtWorks’ MuralWorks program:

ArtWorks employs teen and professional artists to work side-by-side with communities to transform our region.  Since MuralWorks began in 2007, ArtWorks has painted 34 murals in 25 neighborhoods in Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky.  Your neighborhood can be next!

Here’s a little secret — they even hold Secret Artist Events called Secret ArtWorks. The next one is November 18 but wait, you can attend the best of all their past Secret ArtWorks events on October 6 at their MasterWorks event.

The other part of this collaboration was in in relation to JR, a street artist who won the 2011 TED award with his international Inside Out idea to get everyone and anyone involved in art by submitting their portraits, in which they would receive posters on which they were printed and they would then paste the posters in a public area in order to be a part of the public art, global community project. The teen artists painting C. F. Payne’s Singing Portrait Mural for MuralWorks participated in Inside Out with their own portraits that they had pasted on the wooden planks surrounding the scaffolding on which they were working to paint the mural.

INSIDE OUT is a large-scale participatory art project that transforms messages of personal identity into pieces of artistic work. Upload a portrait. Receive a poster. Paste it for the world to see.

InsideOut project photos_JR Photography, as seen on Art Is Everywhere

I like this idea but I do not consider individual photographic portraits pasted to singular spots in public spaces as murals. They are more like pin-up posters or similar to something you could see as billboard advertisements in Times Square. However, I did a post on JR and the strategic placements of large scale photographic portraits that he uses in his own work is different in how they are used collectively to transform an entire village or community or public space and it’s people is truly remarkable. No wonder JR is the winner of the 2011 TED Prize.

From the streets of Paris, where he started to the heart of the Middle East conflict to Brazil and Cambodia, here are a few of his works from the latter location. The changing eyes on the train is brilliant.

JR public art in Cambodia as seen on Art Is Everywhere

JR street art in Cambodia as seen on Art Is Everywhere

JR street art in Cambodia as seen on Art Is Everywhere

This is where “street art” can be powerful and leaves a lasting impression long after the artwork is gone.

Brick by Brick by Brick

Who said, “Things come to those who are patient,”  and I’ll add persistent? Just like these 3-d brick murals, brick by brick by brick and the amount of patience involved in the production and details for it all to add up to create a large mural, some positive press mentions are coming our way. I’ll get to that in a moment but for now, here are some three-dimensional brick murals and a few followups to note, where time and patience is evident and pays off.

1) 3-D Brick Muralist, Mara Smith and some of her public murals.

Meade Bank Mural by Mara Smith, as seen on Art Is Everywhere

Meade Bank Oak Tree Mural by Mara Smith, in Brandenburg, KY

River City Bank Brick Mural_Mara Smith, as seen on Art is Everywhere

River City Bank Derby Theme Brick Mural by Mara Smith

Detail of River City Bank Mural_Mara Smith, as seen on Art Is Everywhere

Detail of River City Bank Mural by Mara Smith

Mara Smith works on brick mural, as seen on Art Is Everywhere

Mara Smith works on brick mural

Artist Mara Smith working on preparatory designs for brick mural, as seen on Art Is Everywhere

Artist Mara Smith working on preparatory designs for brick mural

2) Detroit has Brixels. ArtCorpsDetroit is a public art foundation via Wayne State University that addresses abandoned spaces and how they can be refurbished using art in public education programs. In this case, existing bricks were painted using paint donated by Sherwin Williams and the geometric design was painted by volunteers.

brixels by ArtCorpsDetroit at Hostel Detroit, as seen on Art Is Everyhwere

brixels = combination of bricks and pixels mural by ArtCorpsDetroit

3) Shepard Fairey may need to move over because Alexandre Farto, the Portuguese street artist (Vhills) about whom I had previously blogged has been tapped by Cincinnati to produce some public art murals as well as by Levi’s to be a part of their ad campaign “Go Forth”, in Berlin to carve portraits of four Berliners who exhibit the pioneering spirit. Maybe it was this video that caught their attention. This shows a little bit of his creative production in using mini explosions to create his murals….Just remember to stand back.

Lucky for us we have Chris Stegner’s account and visual pictorial reference of Vihlls revealed and in action creating his Cincinnati portrait. Usually he takes pictures of signs on buildings after they are created but he had just happened to run into Vihlls creating his. How fortunate.

Getting back to some good news mentioned at the onset. Check out this post over at Slipcovers for your Walls and just like Farto’s portrait creations, just when you’re unsure of all the hard work,  all is revealed once there.

Heroic Actions Mapped

In reflection on this past Sunday’s 10th anniversary of 9/11, I thought this unusual “mural” would be appropriate for this post. The artwork was created by mapping geological locations of where actions were taken by firefighters and the fire department (in the Netherlands) over the last 10 years. Although not uniquely American, maybe this is all the more significant in that actions of this type occur universally but to create artwork from it is unique and unusual.

fire_department_graph via the / design and illustration

Wall art created by mapping fire department's actions via

This decorative painting piece was created by a company called stay nice. They’ve mapped other projects as graphic design work as well.

Murals All Over DC

Happy Labor Day!!…It was nice to see TBD, (all over washington) blog pop up in my alerts for murals with their post “The Perks of Being a Wallflower“. They posted 20 photos of murals in DC some of which I’ve mentioned before and others I have fond memories of, such as this one from Chief Ike’s Mombo Room, which is still on our list of dance places to check out when the gumption gets us out dancing that is. This photo must have been taken during off hours because normally this place is packed with dancers shakin’ their groove things to cool 70’s + music.

chief ikes dc mural via TBD, as seen on Art Is Everywhere

I’ve written about this fantastic mosaic mural in National Harbor by Cheryl Foster. I’m still kicking myself that I didn’t have my camera to take pictures of it when I saw it the first time. I love that the artist used actual crab shells and other Chesapeake touch-and-feel items to really give recognition to the theme. The counter facing mural on the opposite side is just as well done and I think I even like it better. I’ll have to go back just to get that picture.

chesapeake mural -d roth amel via TBD, as seen on Art Is Everywhere

I’ve seen this mural many times in Georgetown and it always delights.

Japanese wave mural. Photo by daquella-manera via TBD, as seen on Art Is Everywhere

Check out TBD for the other 17 murals as well as many other articles, like the very humorous Funniest videos yet of Hurricane Irene. Also don’t forget Art Around Us and Mural Locator, also on my blogroll for other examples of public art in DC and around the world that you can help document.


Sorry folks if you’re not hearing from me today. Hurricane Irene has wiped out our power and I’m writing this in advance as lights flicker. I’ll be back next week — if I get out of town for vacation — but Irene seems to have put a damper on the Outer Banks as well.

Be safe and hurricane ready! At least you can do it New Orleans style — taking J & J’s advice about hurricane preparedness on Demystifying Design and be sure to read the post regarding Casart’s wall mural.


Into the Woods

Since I’m heading to a cabin in the woods to hopefully get far enough from technology to tune out and turn off for a bit, I thought this paint-by-number mural would be a fun one to post.

paint_by_number_mural as seen on Art Is Everywhere

Paint by number mural by Curtis Robertson

Paint by number mural by Curtis Robertson, as seen on Art Is Everywhere

Paint by number mural by Curtis Robertson -- before prep via

This is not hard to do but takes a lot of prep work to map out, draw on the wall and assign numbers, which is much harder than the actual painting — that’s the fun part. In fact, if you go on to read the source for this article, the artist even says he’s available for hire to create the grid and instructions so one can map out their mural on the wall and can do it themselves:

Are you for hire and how could someone get in touch with you? Yes. I love doing these, but the best use of my time and a clients’ funds would be for them have me help them select the subject and have me basically create a big “paint by number kit” on walls, and then have THEM fill it in. Then, if they want to hire me again at the end to tweak it, I can.

I like the abstract nature that this type of mural has with it’s “naive” stylistic painting — using blocks of color. Some of us from a slightly older generation can relate to the endearing quality of paint-by-number because we did them, or at least I did, when we were younger. Funny though, they are now viewed as completely “new” by a younger generation and vintage is very in now because it all seems new. I’ve thought about doing a paint-by-number for Casart coverings but I have a different interactive idea in mind that may be coming soon to our website near you….

Looking Up

This is a cool mural for a column under a highway bypass. It also reminds me by this giraffe and it’s long neck that fortunately, business is growing and looking up….Be sure to notice the unexpected details while driving.

Oakland giraffe mural on Art Is Everywhere

Giraffe mural / image painted in Oakland, CA, by Dan Fontes

While mentioning column murals under highway bypasses, here’s an under-bypass mural that looks local but I haven’t seen it (and don’t have any source information)

bypass_mural on Art Is Everywhere

A highway bypass mural

Here are a a couple more highway murals that have grabbed my attention — many from the Tuscon Mural Project.

…And one in London painted like an small cottage town on the side of the railway. Seems like London’s underpasses may be smaller than ours?

British-bypass-mural as seen on Art Is Everywhere

1-Trompe-l-oeil_Bridge Mural as seen on Art Is Everywhere

Trompe l'oeil Ohio River floodwall mural

This one is so realistic that it could possibly cause an accident — someone might drive right through it expecting to pay a toll.



Art Around Us

I’ve discovered another hidden art world in the art site Art Around. It’s similar to Mural Locator but just for DC. Maybe your town has its own Art Around? If not, it should get one.

Here’s what its founders say:

art around is based in DC because that’s where the site’s founders are located. We decided to map our community to show you what you could do with yours. If you want to make the public art in your community accessible to everyone, get in touch with us. We’d love to help you get started.

Art Around Us on Art Is Everywhere

The site encourages people to upload their own images of public art. Just about anything can be “mapped” if it is related to art and in DC — in this case. You check the criteria to the left for what you are looking and the map points change to meet those parameters. This is also like a Wikepedia for art. Once an image is uploaded, anyone can edit and change it. This is especially helpful if the work or the artist is unkown, like this Poppies mural — one of the first ones I clicked. Coincidentally, I feel I know it intimately well, just not the artist or the name, but it’s right across the street from my son’s doctor. This is the parking lot in which I would haul myself to once or twice a week from VA, trying to get into DC right at rush hour, wait an hour and then go back in rush hour. Ahhh, those were the days. The artist’s name, I believe is painted on the bottom of the mural. I’ve admired this piece for quite some time. It is so much more lovely in person.

Poppies via Art Around on Art Is Everywhere

This is a quick post today, but I encourage you to test drive this site. I like Art Around Us because it expresses Art Is Everywhere.

Before signing off, I just wanted to post this cool mural that I found a while back on Mural Locator. The title and artist are unkown but it can be found at this location: Golden Gate Ave & Jones St, San Francisco, California.

Mural_SanFrancisco_ Mural Locator, as seen on Art Is Everywhere

Mural_SanFrancisco_ Mural Locator. Photo by Mark Tarlock

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