WIUM Tristates Public Radio

Mural to Celebrate the Arts in Monmouth

Jul 5, 2019

Work is underway on a huge new mural in Monmouth. It will be painted on the Buchanan Center for the Arts, covering the side of the building that faces the library.

Natalie Curtis, who is overseeing the project, said the wall is about 100 feet long and portions are around 35 feet high.

“It’s cool to have murals outside where anybody can look at it any time.  There are no tickets or admission or something like that. And it’ll be on display for as long as the weather will permit,” she said.

Curtis plans to create a collage that celebrates the arts, the Buchanan Center, and their impact on the town.

“The design kind of begs for the viewer to interact with it. So there is a photo opportunity placed in this,” Curtis said. “We get a lot of foot traffic on the sidewalk and in this alleyway so we thought it would be fun to engage the people as they’re walking by.”

A sketch of the mural. “The painting is a combination of historical things, it preserves some of the art work that’s already here, and other things that celebrate the arts,” said artist-in-residence Natalie Curtis.
Credit Courtesy Natalie Curtis

Curtis said many of the supplies have been donated, and she hoped volunteers will come out to help with the project.  She said anyone who’s interested should call the Buchanan Center to get on the volunteer list.

“This mural is meant to be for the town and everybody in it so if everybody in it could help, that would be awesome.”

Natalie Curtis
Credit Courtesy of the Buchanan Center for the Arts

Curtis is currently applying a heavy duty primer to the wall.  She hoped to start adding the design within the next couple weeks.

Curtis is this summer’s artist-in-residence at the Buchanan Center.  She graduated from Monmouth College in December, 2018 with degrees in math and art.

“I got so much support from the community during my time, especially in the art department. I really wanted to kind of make my mark and give back to the community and do something that thanks them and celebrates them and explores the arts with them,” Curtis said.