Mississippi Flyway Mural

Unveiling Event – Saturday, 11/19 from 3-5pm

Please join Articulture’s Youth Arts Collaborative and Audubon Minnesota on Saturday, November 19 from 3:00 – 5:00 pm for the unveiling of their Mississippi Flyway Mural.

A brief background: This summer, the Youth Arts Collaborative (YAC) partnered with Audubon Minnesota (a nonprofit focused on clean water for the preservation of birds and wildlife), to create an educational mural. The teens, with a lead artist/educator and mentors, designed and executed a mural that addresses issues surrounding water runoff pollution in our waterways that ultimately ends up in the Mississippi River.

The mural is located at the corner of 28th Avenue S and 42nd Street E in Minneapolis, across from A Baker’s Wife. We hope to see you there!

(This project was made possible by a grant from Audubon Minnesota)


About the Mural:

In the summer of 2016, Articulture partnered with Audubon MN to engage Articulture’s newly established Youth Arts Collaborative (YAC) in an environmental education public arts project. The goal of this project was to communicate through visual art what it means to live in a River City, where protecting our clean water resources for birds and people is a responsibility and a way of life.

The teens, ages 14-19, worked with lead artists and educators to develop a plan and resulting design that served to meet the needs of the project and that spoke to the interests of the community. Audubon MN’s Outreach Coordinator assisted in the project’s design, educating the artists on clean water conservation and environmental stewardship with a special focus on native birds of Minnesota. After the careful construction of the design and the thorough preparation of the site’s wall in early July, the YAC began the installation process.

On August 6, 2016, the YAC, in conjunction with Articulture and Audubon MN, held a community paint day where they invited members of the surrounding neighborhoods to join them at the wall. Community members were encouraged to pick up a paintbrush and to seek information about how to protect clean water resources in Minnesota.

The mural is located at the intersection of 28th Avenue South and 42nd Street East in South Minneapolis across from local business such as Buster’s on 28th, Angry Fish Bicycle Shop & Coffee Bar, and Baker’s Wife.  Positioned on a major bus route, the mural site receives plenty of foot, bicycle and motor vehicle traffic making it a perfect spot for an educational and inspiring public art installation. This project serves as a “call to action” for the community to make changes in their everyday behaviors that will better protect and conserve the clean water resources we share with birds and other native wildlife.

The mural is expected to be finished in October 2016 with a public unveiling to be announced.


Explanation of Design:

The design features a cityscape morphing into farmlands then into wetlands with birds and wildflowers native to Minnesota scattered throughout. City imagery represents Minneapolis’ status as a River City located on the great Mississippi River. Coupled with a giant drain leading into the river, the city scene urges the viewers to reflect on how we affect and can better protect our clean water supply. The farmlands, signifying the concerns surrounding runoff related to the farm industry, are juxtaposed with the forests and wetlands, which provide habitats for birds and wildlife. These habitats are imperative to a flourishing ecosystem, but they cannot remain healthy without clean water. A rain garden near the city hints at the role soil and plant life play in clean water; the soil filtering the impurities out of the water while feeding the plants, which in turn provide food, shelter, and Oxygen for birds and wildlife. There are also people depicted as engaging in eco-friendly activities, such as picking up trash, planting trees, and using bicycles as transportation. To the left of the mural is a sidebar explaining to the community the importance of clean water using statistics and tips on becoming clean water friendly.