CLEARWATER — Downtown Clearwater is getting a makeover.
- Community Redevelopment Agency hires teams of muralists
- Muralists to paint buildings in and around downtown Clearwater
- Goal is to complete all the murals by the end of January
- City of Clearwater
Five teams of artists will convert five buildings into works of art to enhance the area.
The city's Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) has hired five teams of muralists to convert five buildings by adding majestic colors and artistic designs that will enhance, enrich and excite Downtown Clearwater.
In partnership with five downtown property owners, the CRA has commissioned murals that tell the story of Downtown Clearwater’s past, present and future from different points of view.
"The murals will not only improve the visual appearance of downtown, but they will celebrate the nuance, complexity and diversity that exists among the residents and businesses here," said Amanda Thompson, the city’s CRA director.
Three muralists are from the Tampa Bay region, one is from Gainesville and one team is from Uruguay. The muralists will start their work on Nov. 19 and continue through December. The goal is to complete all the murals by the end of January.
Four of the buildings are privately owned, and one building is owned by the city of Clearwater. The city's CRA staff worked with the Downtown Development Board, the Public Art and Design Board, the property owners and the artists to collaborate and choose unique mural designs.
After receiving more than 100 applications from local, domestic and international muralists, the organizations chose the muralists.
• Justin McAllister and the Gibbs High School Mural Club of St. Petersburg will design and paint the mural at the Flag Company, 1360 Cleveland St., Clearwater. They plan to start Nov. 19.
• Florencia Durán and Camilo Nuñez of Uruguay will design and paint the mural at the city's Garden Avenue Garage, 28 North Garden Ave., Clearwater. The mural will cover several stories of the parking garage. They plan to start Nov. 20.
• The husband-and-wife team of Michelle Sawyer and Tony Krol of Tampa will design and paint the mural at Creative Contractors, 620 Drew St., Clearwater. They plan to start Nov. 25.
• Cecilia Lueza of St. Petersburg will design and paint the mural at a commercial property at 512 Cleveland St., Clearwater. She plans to start on Nov. 30.
• Julia Morrisroe of Gainesville, Fla., will design and paint the mural at Clearwater Tower Parking Garage, 33 North Garden Ave. The mural will cover several stories of the parking garage. Morrisroe will begin her work in December. A specific start date hasn't been set.
The Gibbs' club organizer Brian McAllister, a teacher at Gibbs High, said it was important to them to tell a story with the mural, tying in Symbolism and history.
"We took the actual Florida seal and deconstructed it so where you would find the woman who was dropping hibiscus in the water we arranged some things and played with that seal," said Muralist Brian McAllister. "But then we also started to play with the folk lore of the area being protected by storms so you’ll see a big storm on the left hand side and a sunset on the right."