Commission approves new mural in downtown Fayetteville

Photo: Todd Gill, Fayetteville Flyer

Residents can expect to see a new mural in downtown Fayetteville sometime this summer.

The Advertising and Promotion Commission on Monday approved a $25,000 contract with Bentonville-based Monument Studio LLC (aka Fellow Human Gallery) to facilitate a new mural on the west side of the Fayetteville Town Center parking garage at the corner of Block Avenue and Rock Street.

Funding would come from the commission’s public art budget, to which the group allocated $25,000 toward this year.

The commission allocated $105,000 for public art in 2016 when it commissioned JustKids to coordinate a series of works around town as part of the 2017 Green Candy public art project. The works included a large-scale mural on the west side of the former Hog Haus Brewing Co. building at the corner of Dickson Street and West Avenue, a mural at the David W. McKee Architects studio near the intersection of West Center Street and Frisco Trail, and a mural at the southwest corner of West Mountain Street and East Avenue on the downtown square. The project also included hosting three artists at the Walker-Stone House who created a variety of public works.

Molly Rawn, executive director of Experience Fayetteville, said her team learned a lot while working with JustKids.

“One of the things that we learned is that bringing in out-of-area artists to do large-scale public projects is something we can do, and we can do quite well,” said Rawn. “It really works well when instead of us contracting directly with an artist, we’re working with a firm or gallery or curator who does that for a living, and who has those artist contacts, and also who is better suited to engage with the artist.”

Rawn said since parking decks aren’t always the most attractive structures, putting a mural on the side of the Town Center’s deck could be something unique and exciting for downtown Fayetteville.

Local attorney Robert Rhoads, who also serves as a commissioner, said he looked over the contract before the meeting.

“It appears that the minute it’s done, we own it and if for some reason it isn’t something that we want – which I can’t imagine happening – we own it and we could get rid of it,” said Rhoads.

The group unanimously approved the contract. Commissioners Ching Mong and Todd Martin were absent during Monday’s meeting.

Rawn said no artist or specific image has been decided upon, but she expects the project to be underway sometime in June.