Blake Harrison, one of the selected regional artists of 352walls, tells us about his mural:
The passing cars carried the happy sounds of support around the traffic circle on Depot and South Main. I turned and looked over my specs and waved back in agreement and smiled. I knew everyone who saw us all working on the new murals, on the south wall of the old Discount HiFi building, were enjoyed witnessing the process unfold.
I chose to paint a historical image circa the early 1900’s, when carts were being pulled around a new Gainesville by oxen and mules. The area around the traffic circle used to be known as the Tin Camp Tourist Camp. The Hippodrome, previously a Federal building, also is close to the murals’ location. I’m glad my piece was chosen as the “first” mural as it depicts the beginning of our fair city of Gainesville!
Working with the other artists was full of camaraderie and conviviality. We all pitched in with helping hands, from sharing tools of the trade to helping line up things on the wall. It is not easy climbing up and down the 20 foot high scaffolding, for sure! Everyone was so kind, joyful and helpful.
I so very much enjoy doing public art pieces. Whenever I can try and put a little piece of myself in them. In this one, I put my iconic eyeglasses on the little fella in the rear of the cart who seems to just be tagging along and enjoying the ride. A touch of color to start the flow of so much more color to follow! Also, the big fella with the big white hat is dedicated to a long-time art comrade of mine who has been with me collaborating on our art since the beginning of my art career. It was a fun mural to paint!!!
I’d like to thank, Raquel, Iryna and Russ and everyone else responsible for helping make this new artwork possible. Thanks to all! – Blake Harrison.