In this Greek streetscape mural named Koutouki, my clients wanted to project a vision of a vibrant section of Athens, called Plaka, into the 124 street area of Edmonton. The idea was to create an artistic prophecy and inspiration of what the area could become, for all of the public to see. It worked! The area now looks like a local version of the mural with cool, high quality restaurants and cafes – except in Edmonton, not Greece. This mural was a welcoming visualization for small businesses to set up in the 124 Street neighbourhood.
This project fit my main goal as a mural artist: to provide the public with a brief escape to a brighter world, in this case a colourful street in Greece. Old character buildings in warm oranges and reds crowd together spilling out restaurants and cafes onto the sidewalk, where visitors enjoy patios or just walking by. Curving into the distance on the left side of the mural the street gives way to historical buildings in Athens, while on the right side an alley shows another path to more of Athens in the far background. In painting a vibrant restaurant scene in another culture, the mural provided a blueprint in paint of what could happen in it's area.
While the end result of this mural was a colourful beacon of public art, there are deeper values underneath. Years of desires to increase the public's connection to the area, the community's walkability, and creating beatification existed before the first brush stroke. For a community to invest in art showcasing the successful future they want for their area is a display of pride in placemaking that proves art can transform our reality.
I am available for freelance. Can't wait for the next exciting project! Could be yours?