Arts commission proposes murals for downtown Mundelein

 
 
Posted1/23/2018 5:30 AM

Mundelein arts aficionados want to beautify the downtown area with public murals on the sides of buildings there.

The proposal comes from the Mundelein Arts Commission, which was formed by the village board two years ago and aims to promote cultural, visual and performance art in Mundelein.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

"Murals truly are art for the people," commission member Bruce Moon told the village board during a presentation Monday night.

"They build a sense of community identity."

Moon and two other commission members showed examples of painted murals as well as vinyl reproductions of artwork that could be applied and eventually removed with much more ease.

They also talked about possibly commissioning murals on framed canvas that, like vinyl installations, could go up and down more easily than artworks painted directly on building facades.

Arts commission members have spoken with artists and property owners, Moon said, and they have identified a few possible locations.

Although none have been finalized, the Area General Store on Park Street and the Mundelein Elementary District 75 office on Route 45 were among the sites mentioned during the presentation Monday.

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Costs could vary dramatically, depending on the medium that's chosen and the artists' personal fees. Funding could come from the commission's budget, grants, private donations and other sources.

The proposal was warmly received by village leaders. Mayor Steve Lentz said he was intrigued by the idea of interchangeable canvas murals.

Trustee Dawn Abernathy also was enthusiastic about the concept but said she'd prefer the murals be painted by local artists with supplies purchased at stores in Mundelein.

Abernathy also suggested commissioning a piece from local high school students.

"They might be able to come up with something truly creative and unique," Abernathy said.

Mundelein has developed or assisted several public arts projects in recent years, including a statue at the police station and the decorative painting of some roadside utility boxes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

Murals aren't explicitly banned by any village ordinances, but they're not explicitly permitted, either, Village Administrator John Lobaito said.

"Therefore (they're) not permitted since there are no regulations providing for them," Lobaito said.

Commission members said they'd apply for special permits for each mural if the project progressed.

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