Artists needed for storm drain mural projects in 2015

Local artist Tina Oppenheimer works to complete a storm drain mural at the southeast corner of School Avenue and Mountain Street across from the Fayetteville Public Library earlier this year.

Photo: Todd Gill, Flyer staff

Another round of artists are needed to help add to the growing list of storm drain murals across the region.

UpStream Art is seeking 11 artists for planned murals in Fayetteville, Springdale, Bentonville and Bella Vista.

The public art and awareness project, now in its fourth year, seeks to remind people that water entering storm drains ends up in local streams, not the city’s sewer system.

“Whatever you see in the street — cigarette butts, leaking oil, antifreeze, pet wastes – all of those pollutants, plus whatever the water picks up as it washes across parking lots and roadways, goes directly in its untreated state straight into our local streams and drinking water sources such as Beaver Lake,” said Jane Maginot, extension urban stormwater educator for the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture.

“Our hope is that the art will help raise awareness of the purpose of these drains and help reduce the amount of pollution returned directly to the environment,” she added.

Artists have painted 34 storm drains in Washington and Benton counties since the project began in 2012, including 11 murals in Fayetteville.

Fayetteville locations set to receive murals in 2015 include Dickson Street in front of the UA Nanotechnology building, Leroy Pond Drive near Bud Walton Arena, Meadow Street at the UA HPER bus stop, and in UA Lot 56 at the Mullins Creek entrance.

Artists should visit the UpStream Art website for information on how to apply. The deadline to submit an application is Feb. 4.