The Tempe Tapestry just got a lot more vibrant thanks to fashion boutique Here on the Corner and recent ASU graduate Ali Dodt. The young muralist began brainstorming a mural project with Here on the Corner owner Julie Kent back in November of 2013 and began painting the mural in March of this year with help from friends, co-workers, and members of the Tempe community.
As the mural, which is located near Seventh Street and College Avenue in Tempe, receives its finishing touches, Dodt and her team are inviting everyone to join them for a celebratory block party.
The Resolana mural, which means "a south facing wall where the sun shines and people gather to engage in community," originally emerged as a way to draw more customers to the store where Dodt worked.
Dodt's idea for the urban art project spawned from a recent trip to Brazil where she drew inspiration from the prevelance of street art in Sao Palo.
"The street art there stood out to me as the most freeform expression that can influence a community because it's out there for the people to see and experience without them really having to go look for it," says Dodt.
But rather than let the mural be merely a passive influence on the passersby, Dodt and her team turned to the community to dictate the direction of the project. The mural features a gray monochromatic backdrop of geometric shapes highlighted by 100 colorful steel butterflies, which were painted and inscribed with meaningful notes and dedications from a wide array of Tempe residents.
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In addition, bikes have been donated, painted, and mounted to the 60 foot mural by 10 non-profit organizations including the Tempe Community Council, the Boys & Girls Club, the YMCA, Maggie's Place, and a white "ghost" bike donated by Bike Saviours and dedicated to the late ASU student Christoper Volpe.
"Julie and I both have very strong belief that community is just a very important part of how to live your live, to value to community," says Dodt.
The free block party kicks off at 6 p.m. on Saturday, May 17. Festivities include live music, local art, store sales, a ribbon cutting ceremony, and words from some of the mural's contributors. For details on the event, visit The Resolana Block Party on Facebook.