Out-of-state muralists coming to make art in Charleston

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CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) — The pandemic put a lot of public art projects in Charleston on hold, and now the city is catching up.

Most of Charleston’s murals are from local or in-state artists, but for the city’s newest projects, they’ve hired some out-of-state muralists to let them experience Charleston and put that experience into art for all to enjoy.

Anyone who has traveled to other states may recognize the Greetings Tour postcard murals.

With 50 murals in more than 25 states, now Charleston will be getting their very own Greetings Tour mural.

“Like most things, this idea of bringing this artist to Charleston, somebody had gone somewhere else and they came back to a committee meeting and said ‘we have to bring it back to Charleston,'” said Jeff Pierson, the City of Charleston’s Public Arts Director.

The question now is, what icons will go in the letters?

People 13 News approached Tuesday suggested the West Virginia ‘Mothman’ and mountains.

Pierson says the icons that will illustrate the Charleson letters remain to be seen — they’ll be choosing a total of five.

The location has already been picked out, it will be located at the Summers Street parking garage.

The postcard mural will come with a price tag of $27,000.

Pierson says this price is fair.

“We have standards for what things cost based on squared footage, based on the detail of the work, the artist themself,” he said.

Also coming to Charleston, is Minneapolis-based GoodSpace Murals.

The mural that pays tribute to George Floyd in Minneapolis was created by them.

In Charleston, a blank wall across from the Clay Center will be its location.

Pierson says the theme for this mural will be different and less literal than the postcard mural.

“It’s going to be more about the people and kind of the feeling of the community, the emotion of the community,” he said.

Because public art, he says, creates collective pride and enlivens the community.

“You know, when somebody travels when they travel somewhere else, they think about what local restaurants to eat in, and what local art to take a part in,” he said.

The installation of the Greetings Tour postcard mural is slated for 2022.

In the meantime, the city will be working on the design.

The GoodSpace Murals project will be done this October with public paint parties.

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