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  • Brenda Ehly

Duluth's Hill Street Mural is (sort of) Underway!

Updated: Apr 14, 2018


I can hardly believe it. Really.


Sometime last year, a friend encouraged (arm-twisted) me to respond to a call for artists published by the Duluth Public Arts Commission (DPAC). I was hesitant for all the most predictably mundane reasons. What if my application is rejected? What if it's accepted, and I find out I'm in over my head? What if . . . blah, blah, etc.


Deciding I had nothing to lose but my dignity and self-respect, I heeded the call. After creating a design and submitting a proposal, DPAC has given me the green light to proceed. I am VERY excited.


Now, I'm appealing to all Duluthians and fans of Duluth to lend a hand.


I have created a calendar on SignUpGenius (http://www.signupgenius.com/go/60b0848acac23a7f94-hill), whereby 1-2 volunteers may join me at a time.  NO artistic experience is required - just  a willing spirit.  As you can see, we're not recreating the Cistine Chapel ceiling. It's ants! You can do this! Picture me handing you a Solo cup filled with paint and an appropriately-sized brush, while saying, "If it's labeled with a '12', paint it red!", in soothing tones. This is open to 7th grade through senior citizens.

Why ants? Well, here's what I wrote in my proposal:

"My mural design, Dream Big, depicts a cohort of ants embarking upon a routine mission. While the majority immediately get down to the business of meeting their quotas and the expectations of those back home, a lone ant dares to dream on a grander scale in the face of at least one doubter. Each ant has a role to play. Achieving even the mundane and expected requires a sturdy resolve. The day-to-day check-lists of life can sometimes feel like pushing a boulder (or an olive, depending on one’s stature) uphill. The color scheme is inspired, in part, by the Duluth City Flag. I hope its theme will appeal to all ages. No community is successful without its share of visionaries and those who are willing to quietly toil for the common good with little recognition."


In general, I'll be painting six hours a day, 4 days each week until we get 'er done. I have created slots for 1-2 to people at a time to come help measure, grid, prime, paint, and seal. Come keep me company and create some great memories, while creating something delightful to point to. Then, the next time you're walking or driving through downtown Duluth, you can proudly exclaim, "Look at that! I painted the second pimento from the left!"


I've already logged in my first volunteer hour. Leisa Bazemore of Perimeter Church helped me use a level and chalk to create an accurate template for my design. I'm so glad she was there: 117.5 ft is a LONG wall!

Leisa Bazemore, a proud member of the cafe staff at Perimeter Church, is proud to help install public art in downtown Duluth!



SignUpGenius link: http://www.signupgenius.com/go/60b0848acac23a7f94-hill

Location: Corner of Hill Street and W. Lawrenceville St. Duluth, GA

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