A suburban Cincinnati dog park is getting a massive mural — and no, it’s not advertising — that celebrates dogs, covers up an unsightly old lock-testing chamber alongside the Ohio River, and gives local artists some paying work.
The makeover is being done by a team of artists and students from ArtWorks, a local organization that connects student apprentices with professional artists to create public art around the Greater Cincinnati area.
About 20 dogs will be featured on the wall – all of them depictions of real pets who visit the members-only dog park — along with a famous quote from Plato:
“Life must be lived as play.”
The idea of painting the concrete structure that sits in the middle of Kellogg Park’s dog field in Anderson Township was put forth by resident Claudia Cline, who regularly visits the dog field with her beagle-mix, Pflash.
“I absolutely love it, … and it represents the dogs beautifully,” Cline told the Community Press & Recorder. “Not only does the park benefit, but the kids get jobs as artists. The whole area looks totally improved and like somewhere you’d want to hang out.”
Student apprentices are working with lead artist Elizabeth Hatchett and assistant teaching artist Laura McNeel to put a new face on the former lock-testing facility.
“We wanted it to be fun and whimsical, and we wanted to show the playfulness of dogs,” said Susan Romer, one of the student artists working on the mural. “It represents the dogs’ personalities and we tried to show each dog as they really are.”
The mural should be finished by November.
Cline said about $2,500 still needs to be raised for the project. About $32,000 has already been taken in through private donations from the owners of the dogs on the wall or those who support public art.
(Photo: Lisa Wakeland / The Community Press)
Posted by jwoestendiek September 28th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: anderson township, animals, apprentices, art, artists, artworks, cincinnati, claudia cline, concrete, dog park, dogs, donations, employment, kellogg park, lock testing chamber, mentors, mural, ohio river, painting, park, pets, plato, program, work
That dog-themed mural painted on the side of an Arlington, Virginia grooming shop is being painted over, but the owner of the shop says a new one will go up — one she assures won’t be construed, like the first one, as advertising.
The whimsical, 960-square-foot mural on the side of Wag More Dogs ran alongside the Shirlington dog park, and was commissioned by store owner Kim Houghton for $4,000 shortly before the shop opened in 2010.
Even before the opening, Arlington decided the mural was not art, but advertising. Given city rules permit signs of only 60 square feet, they ordered it reduced or covered.
Houghton covered the mural with a blue tarp and sued Arlington in federal court.
In February 2011, U.S. District Court Judge Leonie M. Brinkema issued a 31-page opinion, siding with Arlington.
The judge concluded that Houghton “cannot reasonably assert that the dog mural is anything other than a business sign, erected as part of a business strategy to advertise and promote the Wag More Dogs brand.”
Houghton, a former advertising representative for The Washington Post, appealed, but this May the 4th Circuit federal appeals court upheld Brinkema’s decision.
Houghton’s attorney said this week that he disagreed with that decision.
“Today, Arlington County has muzzled free speech. If the mural displayed cats, dragons or ponies, it would be fine,” he told the Washington Post. No further appeals are planned, he said.
Houghton started painting over the mural Tuesday.
“I’m sad to see the mural that was an expression of my joy of being on this dog park, of my love of dogs, be wiped out, after a long struggle,” she said.
She said a new mural would replace it, free of commercial content, and unrelated to the shop, which grooms and boards dogs. The original mural contained some of the same cartoon dogs in her company’s logo.
(Photo: Tom Jackman / The Washington Post)
Posted by jwoestendiek September 27th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: advertisement, animals, arlington, art, boarding, court, dog park, dogs, federal, freedom of speech, groomer, grooming, kim houghton, mural, over, painting, pets, removing, ruling, shirlington, sign, virginia, wag more dogs
For almost two years now, a big blue tarp has covered the backside of Kim Houghton’s dog grooming shop, Wag More Dogs in Arlington, Va., as courts try to figure out if what’s beneath it is art or advertising.
Since Wag More Dogs’ backside faces Shirlington Dog Park, Houghton thought it would be a good idea to turn the boring cinderblock wall into a mural. She spent $4,000 to commission a painting of cartoon dogs, bones and paw prints. It was intended as gesture of goodwill, she says, and a gift to the community.
The Arlington County Zoning Board saw it differently.
In the fall of 2010, the board informed her that it considered the mural a sign for her business, and that it violated the neighborhood size limit of 60 square feet — even though the mural itself doesn’t mention her business. Houghton said she was told to cover the mural at her own expense, face fines or closure, or make the mural a government sign by adding “Welcome to Shirlington Park’s Community Canine Area” in four-foot-high letters.
In December, 2010, she filed a lawsuit, saying the county was violating her right to free speech. U.S. District Judge Leonie M. Brinkema disagreed and dismissed her lawsuit in February of 2011.
The following June, Houghton field an appeal, with the backing of the Institute for Justice, a nonprofit, Arlington-based libertarian law firm.
It’s scheduled to be heard this week by a federal Court of Appeals in Richmond, WTOP reports.
Her attorney says he will argue that Arlington’s sign code “unconstitutionally gives government bureaucrats the power to play art critic.”
Posted by jwoestendiek March 22nd, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: advertising, animals, appeals court, arlington, art, boarding, building, dogs, first amendment, free speech, groomer, institute for justice, kim houghton, mural, pets, shirlington dog park, virginia, wag more dogs, wall, zoning board
The mural of Philadelphia Eagle Michael Vick choking a dog in a Dallas Cowboys uniform was painted over Friday by the city of Philadelphia’s “graffiti abatement team.”
The painting had gone up recently on the side of a “Tires ‘R’ Us” store on York Street in the city’s Kensington section.
Within a day of images of the artwork showing up on assorted blogs, the city covered it over, saying no permit had been issued for it, NBC in Philadelphia reported.
Permits are needed for murals on any buildings in the city, said Andrew Stober in the mayor’s office of transportation and utilities.
The manager of the building gave the “OK” to paint over the mural, said Stober, but Stober would not comment on who put it up or if there were any complaints about it.
Posted by jwoestendiek August 31st, 2009 under Muttsblog.
Tags: art, covered, dallas cowboys, eagles, graffiti, kensington, michael vick, mural, painted over, painting, philadelphia, shop, store, tire r us, tires r us, vick, wall
A mural has appeared on the side of a tire store in Philadelphia, depicting Michael Vick in his new Eagles uniform, choking a dog in a Dallas Cowboys uniform.
Vick, who served an 18-month federal prison sentence for dogfighting, made his return to the NFL last night.
Posted by jwoestendiek August 28th, 2009 under Muttsblog.
Tags: art, dallas cowboys, dogfight, dogfighting, eagles, football, graffiti, kensington, michael vick, mural, nfl, philadelphia, spray paint, tire shop, vick