The Vermont Cynic

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Burlington beautified by new murals

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Burlington beautified by new murals

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What started off as an entrepreneurship project turned into something much larger for two UVM graduates.

Ben Weigher and Tim Adreasen are the founders of an arts and boardsport nonprofit called Art on Board.

“Art on Board started out as our final econ project,” Weigher said. The two continued the project after graduating from UVM.

Art on Board helps to fund murals, secure permit for the murals and even market videos created during the process of the mural, he said.

“The organization strives to build communities by promoting positivity, creativity and inclusive engagement through all different forms of art,” Weigher said.

“At first we would reach out to the artists we were fans of, but now we receive weekly submissions from people all over,” he said.

Art on Board holds fundraisers, galleries and public art clinics as part of their mission.

“Currently we are working with Main Idea, a video production company based in Burlington,” Weigher said.

The video will help demonstrate our mission and more of what we do,” Weigher said.

There is a scheduled showing of the film at UVM this upcoming fall semester. Although the project originated in Burlington, the founders now operate out of New York City.

After school programs in Brooklyn, New York have been a recent development of the young organization, Weigher said.

“Now that Art on Board has expanded across the state lines, the organization depends on personal networks to ensure their mission is being upheld.” he said.

“The connections that were molded at UVM have been a reliable structure for the organization to reach out to,” Weigher said. A recent project is the mural in the parking lot of Pearl Street Beverage.

“Da Race,” painted by Mitchell Schorr, depicts a speed race with various racing cars and an ice cream truck.

“People are stopping to share stories related to the automotive theme of the murals,” Weigher said.

“I like the contrast of the cars. I thought the ice cream truck was a funny add on” first year Marc Dalrymple said. The mural is part of a larger project called “Beautify Earth.” Brian Clarke, a local artist, manages the project in Burlington.

“He’s our man on ground and our personal presence,” Weigher said.

“It’s a project out of L.A. that was founded by Evan Meyer,” Clarke said. “It started out on Lincoln boulevard, neighbors began pitching in and eventually it caught on,” he said. “The goal is to paint a million murals around the world.”

The project has achieved roughly 1,000 murals thus far, Clarke said.

Clarke’s passion for the arts began in 1993, after dropping out of art school to become a ski bum, he returned to his artwork and has continued with it since.   

He has now completed roughly seven murals in Burlington,  Clarke said. While the Pearl Street mural has generated positive feedback, not all projects have.

“I’ve had murals painted over because they were too political and received community backlash,” he said.

Clarke’s piece “Lucky Harms” was painted over because it had too strong of a  political standing against Monsanto and corporate foods.

“I wasn’t sure whether it was a gun or a painting,” he said.

“More public art in Burlington will be good for everyone, good for the public, good for the art and good for tourism,” Clarke said in a previous interview for The Vermont Cynic.

Clarke and other local artists will present at a community crowdfunding dinner called “A Super Supper” at Arts Riot, on Sept. 10.

For a $10 entry fee, guests will sample food provided by local restuarants and vote for their favorite project.

The winner will recieve the funds from the night to support their project.

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Burlington beautified by new murals