OSWEGO, NY – The Springboard Mural Project is poised to launch another season of bringing some color to Oswego’s Riverwalk West.
Nearly two dozen young artists are collaborating on the murals to be painted along the walkway.
It’s the committee’s fourth round of artwork, according to Dawn Metott, youth activities coordinator for the Oswego City-County Youth Bureau.
The students created their own designs and submitted them to the Common Council for approval prior to committing the work to public space.
A request from Linda Goodness, member of Springboard Mural Project Committee, to continue their mural project, which began in 2009, along the Oswego Riverwalk West, was also OK’d at a recent Common Council meeting.
“We have 23 students who have submitted artwork (for council consideration). And we’re here tonight to support their artwork,” she said. “We have been installing them along the River Walk and most people have been very complimentary about us doing that.”
There are still pockets of graffiti in some areas of the River Walk, Council President Ron Kaplewicz noted.
“Can we perhaps create new canvases for these 23 and get rid of some of the garbage that’s up there?” he asked.
That is part of what they are doing through this on-going project, she replied.
“We hope to start right after school gets out, probably the end of June. I believe we have 23 murals approved for this year and 17 artists,” Metott told Oswego County Today. “We have received some funding, but no material donations yet.”
“The Springboard Mural Project is grateful for the donation received from Louis and Melissa Fournier to use in this year’s projects. He is the president of the Sutton Companies,” Goodness added.
As for cleanup of the area: they recently had 23 young people and adults down along both sides of the river cleaning up graffiti.
“We put in a combined 69 hours of community service cleaning up graffiti. It was awesome,” she said. “We still have to go from the murals north to the Bridge Street bridge, but we got A LOT done along the river walk.”
Cleaning and getting the area ready to start painting were volunteers from Oswego Youth Court, artists from the Springboard Mural project, an AmeriCorps member and a few youth volunteers. They included:
The mural project is a youth-focused initiative, with the design concept and implementation directed by local young people with the support of the Springboard Mural Committee.
It was originally a city sponsored community development plan to address graffiti issues.
The mural committee is a community collaborative that is comprised of Oswego youth, city of Oswego officials, teachers and students of Oswego High School, artist mentors, as well as Youth Services Street Outreach, the Oswego City-County Youth Bureau and the Oswego YMCA.
Works of art that were completed in previous years can be viewed along the river walk on the west side of the river, directly below the Utica Street Bridge.
Anyone interested in participating, either as a mentor or youth artist or in donating to the program, should contact Metott at 349-3575 or [email protected]