Murray Hill mural project blooming

Murray Hill mural project blooming
Before and after of the Florida Christian Apartments sponsored Mural No. 6 in the Murray Hill Preservation Association mural series.

The Murray Hill Mural Project continues to grow, in some cases figuratively. The latest design, on the northwest face of a building on the Florida Christian Apartments campus, features a modern take on flora.

“I wanted something vintage, classic, floral but with a fresh, modern look,” said Nicole Holderbaum, the Jacksonville Beach artist known as Nico, who was chosen for this mural.

Located at 1115 Edgewood Ave. South, Mural No. 6 in the series sponsored by the Murray Hill Preservation Association (MHPA) began with an outline in mid-April and was completed within 10 days.

One of the board members at Florida Christian Apartments donated money to fund the mural, and MHPA covered the rest. Costs include renting the lift as well as the paint.

Meredith Sullivan with a small-scale sketch of her jellyfish mural for J&W Discount.

Meredith Sullivan with a small-scale sketch of her jellyfish mural for J&W Discount.

Murals No. 7 and No. 8 are planned for a wall at J&W Discount, 4045 Post St., and were funded by the new owner of the business, Michael Danhour, after he saw a comment on social media indicating the buildings would make a great canvas for some artwork.

“I reached out to Jason Tetlak, and we decided this would be a cool spot to have a series of murals, with six bays measuring 20-feet wide by 25-feet high,” said Danhour, president of Danhour Group, a real estate investment, land development, and distressed property rehabilitation company.

The artists selected for the first two murals are Elizabeth McConney, a continuing education instructor at Artistic Literacy, Inc. and art educator with the Jacksonville Public Library, and Meredith Kay Sullivan, a young artist in the process of completing a Fine Arts degree at the University of North Florida.

Sullivan’s design consists of tranquil brightly colored jellyfish. Sullivan, who used to work at the former Cowford Trader shop in Avondale, is hoping to complete the 30-foot high by 25-foot wide mural before Memorial Day.

At this time Danhour’s not sure how the other four murals will be funded, but is working on a plan made possible through an unexpected discovery.

One of Danhour’s business ventures includes flipping older homes. He recently purchased the home of the late local artist Ben’h Usry, who passed away two years ago, and found a treasure trove of Usry’s work in the house. He hopes to auction the art to fund additional murals.

“It’s not really a money-maker, it’s more of making sure the art is not thrown out in the trash,” said Danhour, who hopes to work with CoRK Arts District and MOCA to hold a public sale of Usry’s artwork.

By Kate A. Hallock
Resident Community News

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