Inspired by a zest for life

Inspired by a zest for life

Heartspace Art founders Ian and Danielle Cleary have painted a new mural, a mural with a message.

Their latest work of inspiring art can be found on a wooden slat fence in Murray Hill. The scene is of three sunflowers popping out of clouds, reaching for the sky. Danielle likens it to a metaphor for life, offering encouragement and a message of confidence. “Reach high. It’s closer than you think,” she said.

Underneath the sunflower mural, the couple painted the words “Love Life” so that there’s intention behind it. “We wanted that energy to vibrate out of that painting,” Danielle said.

The fence is located on the side of the Murray Hillbilly Restaurant. It was erected to make a private, outdoor eating area for patrons and to partition space for sound healing gatherings.

Heartspace Art partners with people who host community events. They’re currently working with Riverside Arts Market (RAM), and Riverside Avondale Preservation (RAP) is also involved. On February 6th at RAM, folks had the opportunity to be part of a collaborative mural, a project funded by the Cultural Council of Greater Jacksonville. Danielle and Ian had mapped out huge coloring pages on two wooden panels that community members could paint on. One is the image of the sun shining on the downtown skyline. Bold lettering spells out, “Shine love on Jacksonville.” The other depicts a young woman running from 2020 into 2021, declaring, “Curiosity is an act of courage.” The completed pieces are displayed every Saturday at RAM.

The Clearys have been traveling and creating art together for five years. Recently, they decided to re-brand and home in on a niche, focusing exclusively on local large-scale temporary and permanent murals using paint, chalk, and other mediums. Danielle dreams of working with schools.

She wishes for all members of the community to be like the sunflowers on that fence, “to be seen as the beautiful people we are. Shine your light bright. Reach for the sky,” Danielle said.

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