Thursday, August 7, 2014

Jason Miller's New Mural at the Gaisman Community Center

Posted By on Thu, Aug 7, 2014 at 11:18 AM

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Community-themed murals are often big, colorful, optimistic, and kind of terrible. For some unknown reason, neighborly virtue is universally painted in watered down oranges and neon greens. Communityish things are always created with the exact emotional range of the bureaucracies that commission them. They are hard to get right and easy to get wrong and either way we are stuck with them.

Jason Miller's new mural at the Gaisman Community Center in Gaisman Park (near the intersection of Macon and Covington Pike) is not terrible. It is big and colorful, but more weird than optimistic. The mural features Gaisman community members suspended in a larger than life, gravity-less parkland. A white-haired, wizardly-looking man plays pool. Elvish community members, as portrayed by Miller, go about their normal community center routines— working out, playing bingo or pool or basketball, or jubilantly doing the splits—but look very like mercurial forest nymphs caught at play. A few of them hold their bingo boards and stare knowingly at you, as if the bingo boards held incalculable secrets. The mural is big and detailed and just mystical enough as to not be drab. You can get lost in it.

The mural is not visible from the street but is definitely worth some investigation if you are in the area.

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