Artists announced for storm drain murals in Fayetteville

Cave Salamander and Zebra Swallowtail by Leah Saffian, 2012 (Maple Street and Frisco Trail)

Photo courtesy of UpStream Art

The University of Arkansas campus is the focus of this year’s UpStream Art Project in Fayetteville.

Now in its fourth year, the project will add over a dozen new murals to the region, including four in Fayetteville at:

UA Lot 56 – at the Mullins Creek entrance (Randy Rust)
735 Dickson Street – in front of the UA Nanotechnology building (Lee Porter)
Leroy Pond Drive – by Bud Walton Arena (Paige Dirkson)
Meadow Street – by the UA HYPR building bus stop (Kate Barnes)

A handful of local artists are selected each year to paint murals on storm drains as part of the public art and awareness project which seeks to remind residents that water entering storm drains ends up in local streams, not the city’s sewer system.

“Grease, oil, sediments, litter, brake dust, anti-freeze, fertilizer, yard clippings, pet waste– all of those pollutants, plus whatever the water picks up as it washes across parking lots and roadways, goes raw and directly 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.”

Artists have so far painted 34 storm drains in Washington and Benton counties since the project began in 2012.

Other areas set to receive new murals include:

Map of current storm drain murals in Fayetteville.

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Bella Vista – Riordan Hall (Mallory Whitehouse) and CVS on Mercy Way (Katy Kane).
Bentonville – NE “A” Street by 21c Museum (Cassie Conley); SE “A” & SE 2nd Street (Kate Dickinson); and NW 2nd Street between NW “A” and N Main Street (Laura Neill).
Springdale – The Jones Center entrance off Emma Avenue (Emily Chase) and Jones Elementary (Nicole Helt).

Maginot said four more storm drains will be painted in Springdale on the corner of Meadow Avenue and Park Street as part of a collaborative project with the students of Archer Learning Center, the Springdale Senior Center, and Team Springdale. An additional storm drain will be painted by the art students of teacher Amanda Funkhouser at Northside Elementary in Rogers.

The project is led by the University of Arkansas Cooperative Extension Service through the NWA Stormwater Education program. Additional funding for the 2015 project came from a grant through the Arkansas Arts Council.