Planned Hilltop mural aims to inspire and empower

By Josephine Birdsell
Staff Writer

Rendering courtesy of the Greater Columbus Arts Council
This is a mock-up of the design that will be painted on the Wilson Road retaining wall. The design is the collaborating artist’s vision of what Delivering Black Dreams means to them. It is meant to inspire and empower the youth.

The Greater Columbus Arts Council is bringing its project “Deliver Black Dreams” to the Hilltop.

The announcement was made May 4 at the Greater Hilltop Area Commission meeting.

Through Deliver Black Dreams, the council is painting murals across the city that deliver positive messages to the city’s youth. The project was inspired by the street art that was painted on boarded up storefronts in downtown Columbus last summer, following protests of George Floyd’s murder.

The Greater Columbus Arts Council aims to bring hope to the city.

“Deliver Black Dreams is looking at all the things that make a healthy community. Art is the piece that brings it all together,” said Lisa McLymont, project director.

The project includes a mural in the Hilltop. It features two cartoon children, posing in front of the city skyline. The mural includes a black background with dotted line designs that mimic stitching on a quilt. On top, the mural reads “Write it, Paint it, Do it” in bold white lettering.

The design is “talking to the youth in the community who are very impacted (by racism) but probably don’t get many opportunities to talk about what’s happening in the world with race, the pandemic, and other things. This is a hopeful message to encourage families to create, talk and share,” McLymont said.

The mural is to be painted on a bridge’s retaining wall on North Wilson Road, just south of Fisher Road. The mural will be painted this summer. The council estimates that it will take roughly 10 days to paint the mural, during which a portion of North Wilson Road will be closed.

The council plans to power wash the wall, get rid of existing vegetation on the wall, paint and apply an anti-graffiti coat to the wall, which will allow them to easily clean potential graffiti off the mural.

The arts council will offer volunteer opportunities to Hilltop community members who want to be involved in the project.

“We want to put Columbus on the map for something positive,” said Jami Goldstein, vice president of marketing for the Greater Columbus Arts Council.

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