A 1,136-square-foot mural honouring Folklorama has been dubbed Winnipeg’s 2019 Mural of the Year.
The piece — titled Folklorama 50 — was created by artists Mandy van Leeuwen and Franklin Fernando last summer and adorns the side of 847 Notre Dame Ave. in the city’s West End.
“The artwork concept was informed by past photographs chosen to highlight cultures in a way that would stand together — without borders,” van Leeuwen is quoted saying on The Murals of Winnipeg website.
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The mural brings together over two dozen individual items or scenes paying homage to the multicultural festival it represents, including a Mexican sombrero, Chinese dragon, Scottish bagpipes, a Russian doll, a First Nations teepee scene and a perogy.
“Once again, our judges have done a wonderful job in making such a worthy selection for this award,” said Bob Buchanan, who created themuralsofwinnipeg.com, in a news release.
“In today’s world and these troubling times, people want and need more of what Folklorama has and is.”
On the webpage dedicated to the mural, van Leeuwen explains the process was a dual challenge, not only creating the sprawling 70-foot-long piece but also preparing the wall itself, which she says was in need of “significant repair,” and took several people a week to wash and scrape before priming.
Folklorama 50 was chosen from a field of 36 other mural contestants, with awards being presented at noon Thursday in the parking lot next to the mural.