I kept this cat in the bag until the install was complete, but I am so honored to have been selected at the Valley Metro ARTSLINE featured artist for 2018!!! This GIGANTIC mural is located at the Roosevelt & Central Avenue station in Phoenix and will be up for a year until it rotates to the next installment. It's been fun seeing people posting pictures on IG already! The official kickoff is during ART DETOUR PHX this year, and you can also see two more pieces inside the Light Rail cars this year, so be sure to look up when you ride! This was a huge undertaking, and consisted of many, many layers, and I am so happy with the end result! Most of the murals I've done recently are commissions with a real specific goal in mind, and for this project I was given the ultimate in creative freedom, so I really had fun trying out a bunch of different layers and elements to get to the finished design. I had a great time going all out and cramming a ton of fun elements into this one, and tried to honor both my roots in aerosol painting and my more recent canvas style. I really enjoy getting the overall composition realistic and then blowing out some of the elements in a loose or drippy way. Two of our family pets, Hanzo & Winston, joined the party, with Winston the pug entering a portal in one area and popping out in another! My wife was my photo reference for the yogi, and if you look close, you can find the Phoenix Lights & a few other fun hidden elements. Go check it out next time you ride the train & let me know what you find!
Thanks to everyone who came out for Spark! this weekend and said hi! It was so awesome to see so many familiar faces, and to meet a bunch of new ones too. If you didn't get a chance to make it out, you can still stop by the Mesa Art Center and check out the finished Art Cubes! Here's mine at the end of day 2. Got a bunch of emails and texts, and yes...you might recognize my lovely muse I based this one on :) Can't love this picture more with the new mural by El Mac and Mando Rascon in the background! Super stoked to be in the vicinity of two of my hometown heroes. Huge thank you to Mesa Art Center & Creative Catalysts for such a great weekend of art in Downtown Mesa!
UPDATE: I made the paper! Pretty awesome and I'm super grateful to the AZ Republic for always giving Downtown Mesa well deserved love.
This weekend is one of my favorite events in Downtown Mesa, and I'm so stoked to be a participating artist for the first time this year! Spark! Festival of Creativity is held at the Mesa Art Center every year during Spring Break, and hosts various artists of all mediums doing different works for and with the public. This year, I am one of 6 artists who is live painting 10'x10' mobile wood cubes. Stop by today until 10pm or tomorrow (Saturday) from Noon - 10pm as well. Free fun for the entire family! Here's me getting the base colors down on my piece. Stop by, say hi!
The intenational street pianos exhibit called "Play Me, I'm Yours!" is coming to Downtown Mesa this year, and I just got my acceptance email! So I will be working with a community organization, College Bound, to create a design for one of the 24 pianos, and then I will set out to make that vision a reality in time for my piano to hit the streets in March! I am so grateful to be a part of this project. Thank you once again to Mesa Arts Center for bringing yet another amazing exhibit to Mesa!
From the Street Piano's website: "Touring internationally since 2008, Play Me, I’m Yours is an artwork by British artist Luke Jerram. More than 1400 pianos have now been installed in 50 cities across the globe, from London to Lima, bearing the simple invitation Play Me, I’m Yours, and the project has already reached more than eight million people worldwide."
Stay tuned for my piano progress and the event grand opening! #streetpianosmesa
Every Second Friday in Downtown Mesa, they project a FREE family movie outside in the Sliver Lot! It's a fun, well attended event, but each month, looking at that blank huge wall, it just seemed like it needed something. Thanks to the wonderful people of NEDCO, I was able to propose the idea of a giant vintage TV screen to project the movie into, and they were able to support the project with some neighborhood improvement grant funding! So after two days, a scissor lift, my helpful wifey-assistant LuluAmy on rolling and lettering duty, 5 gallons of white and 25 cans of spray paint later, we have a mural! The local news came out and filmed which was both nerve-wracking and exciting! The best part was seeing it in action on the next Second Friday! Over 200 people came out to watch Monsters University, and it was a proud moment to witness! They project a free movie every Second Friday, so bring the family out and enjoy a night under the stars in Downtown Mesa!
In preparation for the Grand Opening of the Downtown Mesa light rail extension, the City of Mesa commissioned me for this amazing project of taking a unused street side alley and transforming it into a usable space! This project, named the Downtown Mesa Lab, is also going to be used to solicit feedback from the public, to help determine future projects in Downtown (no pressure!). There were a few aspects of this project that were a bit of a challenge, but I think the end result is going to be pretty amazing! First challenge was to reuse some City materials, namely a few dozen concrete blocks! Each block weighs over 300 pounds, and they were pretty dated, so the hope was to update them into a more modern look and use! So a dozen of the blocks were delivered via crane into our driveway, and I got to painting! I pulled a fun color pallet of bright colors, which I attempted to pair with colors found in Downtown, or that would compliment them well. For years, Downtown was various shades of beige, so I was excited to have the opportunity to show off some fun colors! After painting the first round of blocks (there will be a phase 2 of this project due to time constraints), I constructed wood benches to go between some of the blocks, and painted a mural on wood of a child blowing bubbles. (this mural will be cut into 8 pieces in phase 2, and inset into another series of paint blocks which will be stacked into a tall wall-like structure). The blocks and benches were craned back in, and I painted a couple metal park benches to match. Next step was to paint bubbles down the park to add whimsy and color to the colonnades. For the parklette unveiling on August 22nd, we will have a bubble machine going and the wood mural will be on display in a temporary fashion until Phase 2 can be completed! Come out to the Grand Opening Night Market on August 22nd from 6-10pm, and enjoy this new space in Downtown. I'm pretty proud of how it turned out & I'm honored the City let me make this vision come to life!
Been doing a ton of proposals for city work lately, wish me luck! Here's one of the recent favorites the review board chose, which if all goes well, will become a mural in Downtown Mesa! I also just got two other murals approved by the City! So excited to bring some color to Downtown. I never thought I'd get so into public art, but it's really cool to see people stopping to enjoy and interact with something you've done. I'm so grateful to be a part of the transformation in my now hometown of Downtown Mesa!