Celebration of the Arts Gets Larger Than Life on Gaines Street

By: City of Tallahassee Release
By: City of Tallahassee Release

Community Invited to Help Paint Mural - The arts are coming alive on Gaines Street in a rather significant way. This week, work begins on a roughly 20-feet by 65-feet mural that depicts the variety of art, music and cultures showcased during the annual Seven Days of Opening Nights festival. The mural is a partnership between the Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) and Florida State University (FSU).

"We are excited to be supporting this project in conjunction with Seven Days of Opening Nights and FSU's Department of Art Education," said Roxanne Manning, Gaines Street project manager for the CRA. "This art work ties into revitalization efforts and the CRA's goal of helping existing businesses and property owners enhance their curb appeal."

The mural will be located on the eastern wall of the building at 688 W. Gaines Street, owned by Dean Minardi and leased by CenturyLink. Use of the wall space is being donated.

This afternoon, the scaffold will be assembled on site. The projection and sketching of the mural will begin this evening. The site will be active from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. through the duration of the project, which is expected to be completed by the end of the month.

FSU's Department of Art Education is spearheading these efforts, with support from Utrecht Art Supplies, and is looking for volunteers to help sketch and paint. To participate, citizens only need to show up and sign in. Interested citizens should contact the Chair of the department, Dr. Dave Gussak, at 645-5663. Volunteers can park in the Arts Xchange lot on Railroad Avenue.

"Public participation is paramount to the success of this mural," said Steve MacQueen, director of FSU's Seven Days of Opening Nights festival. "Seven Days is about bringing people closer to the arts, and this is a great opportunity for people to have an active role in the arts in our community."

Seven Days of Opening Nights is a performing-arts festival that takes place each February and spotlights Florida State University's commitment to the arts invalid unicode 2014 music, theatre, dance, visual art, film and literature. Now widely embraced as the high point on Tallahassee's cultural calendar, the festival began in 1999 and was an immediate success with both the university and the Tallahassee community. The City of Tallahassee has been a partner and sponsor of Seven Days of Opening Nights since its inception.

As part of the Gaines Street Revitalization Plan, Gaines Street is being rebuilt from Monroe Street west to Woodward Avenue. The work along Gaines Street is part of the City Commission's goal to create an 18-hour, pedestrian friendly downtown. For more information on the project's progress, please visit Talgov.com/Gaines, follow @GainesStreet on Twitter or like Gaines Street on Facebook.

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