In the months of uncertainty during the COVID pandemic, the Downtown Menomonee Falls Business Improvement District and Wallpapered City, LLC have teamed up to deliver street art to the heart of the downtown area. Seven murals are now finished and with two more to be completed in the coming weeks.
The Village makeover project has been planned since before the crisis began in early Spring of 2020. When asked how COVID has affected their project, Felicia Reichard, Downtown BID Director responded, “We didn’t hibernate, we got ahead of it all. It gave people something to look forward to when they really didn’t know what was coming next.” Reichard notes a seventy-five percent increase in downtown foot traffic of visitors of all ages in response to new murals. As an open air viewing activity, visitors can travel to all seven murals on foot, as all are within walking distance in the downtown area.
Local resident Vivian Johnson, age 6, became inspired by “Sweet Dreams”, the first mural installed this summer downtown by Houston muralist Anat Ronen. This 120 foot long mural featuring several photorealistic large-scale candy jars is located in the parking lot of Dunne Commercial Properties. Johnson, born with a rare form of Chiari malformation, a condition with a life expectancy of just five years, was entranced by Anat Ronen’s painting, and her mother brought her out to visit the work in progress multiple times. Since the completion of “Sweet Dreams”, Johnson has been invited to paint her own mural.
Following up on a suggestion made by a local business owner to expand the number of murals downtown, Reichard reached out to Wallpapered City, LLC to launch and coordinate this project. Originally five murals were planned, but now the downtown area is slated to feature nine new murals of various sizes, all within walking distance, by early September. This mural project has been so much of a success, the Downtown Menomonee Falls BID and Wallpapered City, LLC are looking forward to bringing more murals to the area in 2021.
“We believe that street art completely changes a place,” says Stacey Williams-Ng, director of Wallpapered City. “The murals become landmarks that people can identify with, and make their
own memories with. It’s so much more than paint on a wall when an artist makes an original piece in a public place.”
- N89 W16785 Appleton Ave. “Sweet Dreams” by Anat Ronen
- N88 W16688 Main St. “Hunter’s Prayer” by Taylor Berman
- N88 W16726 Appleton Ave. “Want For Nothing & Have it All” by Nova Czarnecki
- N88w16624 Appleton Ave. “Beyond Your Wildest Dreams” by Fred Kaems
- N88 W16712 Appleton Ave., Artists: Kathleen Murphy Willer, Liz Hoover, Madelyn Mascotti, Vivian Johnson
N88 W16712 Appleton Avenue now features a mural alley walkway located between two buildings. Café lights are planned for installation to extend hours of mural viewing.
The final mural install of 2020 will be located at N88W16683 Main Street by artist Adam Nilson.
Logistics for this project were provided by Wallpapered City, an artist-led mural liaison company that implements public and commercial art projects. For any questions about this project contact Katie Stensberg, Head of Operations by email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or by phone at (414) 588-7468.
For more information about the arts in Downtown Menomonee Falls, contact Felicia Reichard at email@example.com.