Local artists creating mural for Indy event

Greenfield-Central senior Brenna Bonek, left, and G-C teachers Shonee Junga and Lisa Sears will participate in the inaugural Indy Art Fest in Indianapolis. By Maribeth Vaughn/Daily Reporter Staff Writer /[email protected]

INDIANAPOLIS — Two local art teachers and one of their students will team up to create a mural over Labor Day weekend at the inaugural Indy Art Fest in Indianapolis.

Greenfield-Central High School senior Brenna Bonek will join teachers Shonee Junga and Lisa Sears as one of the teams competing in the festival’s mural event.

Six different teams are creating six different murals in just three days — Sept. 4-6.

Submitted photo
Submitted photo

The murals will be revealed at the festival on Labor Day.

The festival takes place from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday, Sept. 6 , and will feature live art demonstrations, chalk art, body painting and graffiti artists painting cars and car parts. There will also be live music and food and drink vendors.

The main attraction, however, is local artists selling their artwork.

The Indiana Arts Commission states that Indiana artists who rely on their art for income are primarily self-employed, which is in contrast to the national trend showing more corporate and payroll-based artists.

According to information posted at indyartfest.com, “Despite our uniquely strong presence of self-employed artists, Hoosier artists’ wages lag behind the U.S. average. Indiana’s highest-paid creative industry workers make less than half the average U.S. wage for their field.”

Shining a spotlight on local artists is what the Indy Arts Fest is all about, Sears said.

She hopes a number of people will come out to the festival and take some artwork home to support local artists.

“The event is promoting fair pay for artists, which is appreciated,” she said. “Without my teaching salary, it would be difficult to survive on art income alone.”

Sears also loves that festival organizers are donating the murals to various nonprofits around Indianapolis. The one the Greenfield team is working on is going to Artmix, which aims to transform the lives of people with disabilities through the creation of art. The nonprofit plans to sell it in a silent auction.

The mural they plan to create will consist of colorful flat planes, radiating lines and swirls, with images of the Indianapolis Skyline and the statue atop the monument at Monument Circle.

“I hope people enjoy the vibrant colors and feel a little pride for being part of Indianapolis and its suburbs,” Sears, who was inspired to get involved after seeing a callout for artists online, said.

She’s looking forward to creating a piece of public art with both Junga and Brenna, who she calls “one of the strongest senior artists I have the honor of teaching.”

Sears, who has been an art teacher and professional artist for 10 years, said there’s a number of reasons she loves creating murals.

“I love how they envelop the room and change the feel of the environment. Plus they’re equitable — anyone can enjoy them in public environments,” she said.

“They’re also physically challenging to create. I have to figure out new ways to do things that I can do differently on a smaller scale.”

This will be the third mural Sears has done as a professional artist. The first one was done at Keystone at the Crossing last year. She’s also working on an eight-foot-tall, 24-foot-wide mural at a retail store in Brownsburg.

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WHAT: Indy Arts Festival

WHEN: 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday, Sept. 6

WHERE: Indy Auto Man Service Building, 3130 Madison Ave., Indianapolis

COST: $10

INFO: indyartsfest.com

Photo at: https://www.lisasearsart.com/indy-arts-fest-mural.html