March 31, 2013

March of Murals - conclusion

So today, the March of Murals comes to its end. Normally, I don't do commentary here, but I wanted to talk especially about the last two entries: 3/30 and 3/31.

The 3/30 entry was seen on Federal Blvd. Some land is being cleared to build a new store. Workers have uncovered the mural, which had been covered over with yellow paint—I assume for many years.

I drove by it one day, and only a small part had been uncovered. At the time, I made a mental note to return with my camera when I had time. When I came back the next day, much more had been revealed. It occurred to me that, since the store will be built there soon, I was most likely seeing the artwork near the end of its existence. A privilege.

So it is though, that everything does come to an end. At some point, a long time ago, someone went to the trouble of painting all this. After a while, it was painted over, and forgotten. At last, it is revealed to the world once again, only to face its ultimate destruction. In selecting subjects for the March of Murals series, I thought of a mural as "a handmade painting against the wall of a permanent structure," but I have come to realize there is truly no such thing as a "permanent structure".

•     •     •

For the final entry, I had another fortuitous encounter: I originally spotted this mural while it was still a work in progress.

I didn't know it would be there. I was just driving through downtown, looking for stuff to photograph. As it turned out, I happened to drive by this restaurant on March 9, the very day that Oz the Great and Powerful was released in theaters. A few weeks later, the characters had been added, so I went back to shoot the finished product.

Also, I got closeups of Dorothy, the Tin Man, the Cowardly Lion, and the Scarecrow:

With the Catholic mural, I was privileged to witness a work of art near the end of its life. This time, I got to see it during its creation. A city is always changing, always in flux, and I enjoyed taking these opportunities to capture that.

Murals have been used since prehistoric times to give expression to faith, to record memorable events, to advertise businesses, to burn off creative energy, to beautify communities, to inject social commentary, and just for fun. It has been my pleasure to wander and drive the streets of Denver, to bring some of them to you. Why don't you go out there, and discover some for yourself? Or better yet, participate in making one?

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