Friday, March 21, 2014

Mural Ideas Needed For Lawrence & Wilson Viaducts

From Ald. Cappleman's latest newsletter:
"For 2014, I want your input for murals that can go under the Wilson and Lawrence Avenue viaducts along Lake Shore Drive. The State of Illinois has plans for rebuilding these bridges, but we expect it will take several more years for that funding to be released. Speaking for all of us, it can't start soon enough.

During this waiting period, I have budgeted to have these 2 viaducts scraped and repainted and I'll add some brighter lighting as well. To make this area more welcoming, I will be releasing additional funds to pay for murals to be installed along these 2 viaducts. I will also be seeking funds from individuals and corporations to assist with this exciting project.

These murals will last until the State of Illinois is able to release funding for the major repairs that are needed for these bridges. Besides serving as a way of welcoming anyone who enters the ward through Lake Shore Drive, these murals will set the tone for entering into the Entertainment District for Chicago's Northside, which will be a huge economic boost to the Ward and the entire region.

The Lawrence viaduct at Lake Shore Drive
Next steps: 
Give us your ideas for murals at these 2 sites: Feel free to email or better yet, stop by during open office hours to give us your ideas for a mural by May 1st.

Murals with simple designs that have celebratory themes are encouraged.

Uptown United will work with my office to select 4 of the entries and we will then give you a chance to vote on the murals for these two viaducts. After the murals have been chosen, I will work with the City to select artists and high school students to paint the murals on the viaducts.

There are many creative people in this ward, so I can't wait to see your ideas."

15 comments:

  1. UUUUGHHHHH, MURALS? I hope that’s more of a generic term for art. Murals are trashy, tragic and something we do not need more of. This isn’t the 90’s, murals suck.

    Do abstract urban art. Like Banksy or Frank Shepard Fairey.
    Idea submitted – Done.

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  2. Why not just paint them concrete color instead of white?

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  3. Agree. We don't need murals.

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  4. Why spend money on a decoration that will last 5 years? Save the money or spend it on something else until we get new, structurally sound bridges, then feel free to design something like the pedestrian underpass leading to the Museum Campus from Roosevelt. That tile mosaic is awesome and keeps the underpass free from graffiti.

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  5. Those viaducts need to first be cleared of the derelicts that have commandeered the space as their sleeping quarters. Smells like a zoo under there.

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  6. I like the idea, but they'll have to paint around the public drinkers who camp out down there!!

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  7. Please NO MURALS! Use the money to paint them, keep them clean and policed.

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  8. Everything above. And when we want more kids' art, we can put out a call to collect pieces from the fronts of Uptown refrigerators. There are many ways to encourage young artists and display their art (some being done in the neighborhood already), but I think it's a bad idea to put art up where it will shortly be torn down. And for something more permanent, we have many artists who would jump at the opportunity to do this sort of work--commission someone who has a portfolio and who needs to pay bills!

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  9. The last thing we need is tagger type murals. Remember years back that "clam chowder" vandal? Uptown seems stuck in the past which sometimes is okay and other times not so much.

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  10. Let's just start with white paint. We can always do murals later. Ha.

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  11. Budgets are so tight we don't have money to spend on a mural we know will be torn down in a matter of years. Use the money to repair something not scheduled for replacement.

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  12. Paint it to look like it is not in danger of falling down.

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  13. Couldn't agree more with everyone - save the money and skip the temporary (tacky) murals and just paint it clean white. If you really want to spice it up, put some limited stencil art a la Bansky to make a statement. I'm all for public/street art, but personally I feel Uptown has a enough tacky colorful murals as it is.

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  14. I personally don't feel that artwork of some form is a bad idea at all. It's just a project that will indicate that uptown is active and alive, where the current decrepit state of the underpass makes it look like we have turned a blind eye. Getting the youth involved is a good way to give the young a chance to interact with and enhance their community. I DO agree that a tacky mural is not a good idea and in general believe the word "mural" to be stigmatized. Per the first comment, a Shepard Ferry style mural would look fantastic but I think something that identifies Uptown, like maybe a theatre district themed mural would be cool. You have to remember the viaducts are the main eastern gateway when entering uptown from the Drive, and it's a good opportunity to welcome oncoming traffic to the neighborhood we all want enhanced, and to show there is effort being made to do this.

    As for money...Funds budgeted for the artwork is probably negligible in comparison to the funding required to redo the viaduct, so I don't see this as a waste of money. Community Art, Community Activity and cleaning up a sore thumb = a good thing folks.

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