North Baltimore's downtown on track to get railroad mural
Written by JORDAN CRAVENS Sentinel Staff Writer
Thursday, 17 May 2012 09:56
NORTH BALTIMORE - A large wall in the village's downtown will soon become home to a mural commemorating North Baltimore's rich train history which continues today with the CSX intermodal facility.
Stephen Muldoon, an award-winning artist from Florida, has been commissioned to complete the mural on the wall near the railroad tracks on the west side of Main Street.
"I want to take us back in time and show what used to happen in town and sort of use that as an anchor for what is happening now," Muldoon said in a phone interview this week.
"How do you know where you are going unless you know where you have been," he said.
Muldoon will be in town this weekend checking out the wall, researching for the mural and meeting with community members.
The public is invited to meet with Muldoon at noon on Friday in front of the wall. There will also be a "Meet the Artist" event beginning at 5 p.m. Saturday at the Whistle Stop. Muldoon will have some of his work on display and will also discuss conceptual ideas for the mural.
Muldoon is well-known for his use of sephia, which gives the artwork the feel of an old photograph.
He plans to incorporate the sephia tone into the North Baltimore mural.
While in town, he will meet with both the North Baltimore and Wood County Historical societies and visit both museums to research for the mural.
"It is going to give everyone the chance to step back from the modern world and go back in time to a simpler life," Muldoon said of the mural.
The wall itself is about three stories tall and 150-feet wide.
"It's a monster," Muldoon said. "It's going to be great."
He expects to begin work on the mural in September and will be painting live each day.
"I figure it is going to take me at least 10 days to finish the piece," he said.
Muldoon will have a ground crew assisting him, "but I'll be the one flinging the paint."
Local resident and business owner George Thompson has known Muldoon for several years through Muldoon's work with the Wyland Foundation.
Talks began between the two men about a year ago regarding the possibility of a mural in downtown North Baltimore.
"I saw this wall in North Baltimore. It was just this big space that something could be created on," Thompson said.
Thompson found an old photograph of a steam train coming through town at the turn of the century. The photograph will be part of Muldoon's inspiration for the mural.
"I thought that would really be a knockout for people coming through town," Thompson said.
Muldoon, an Ohio native, comes from a family of artists and attended the Cleveland Institute of Art. He has 30 years experience in multi-media imagery, but his passion is working with oils.
Muldoon has completed murals in multi-million dollar homes in Florida and was also commissioned to create historical murals in Marco Island and Sarasota. His murals are also on display in several museums.