Marino Heidel Studios chosen as finalist for large outdoor mural for UMass Dartmouth Living Gallery

Muralist Angelina Marino Heidel and Collaborating Artist Joel Heidel unveil vision for latest initiative in the campus-wide Living Gallery Project designed to re-imagine the university as an artistic and architectural destination

Chancellor Divina Grossman and UMass Dartmouth officials who are part of the University's Living Gallery Project are pleased to announce that Muralist Angelina Marino Heidel and Collaborating Artist Joel Heidel of Marino Heidel Studios have been chosen as the finalist team for the UMass Dartmouth Mural Art Project.  The artists made a special digital presentation, including a mock-up of the mural and samples of the actual materials planned for use, on  Tuesday, May 5, at the College of Visual & Performing Arts Campus Gallery. The Living Gallery Project committee has been reviewing submitted proposals since its national call for artist in January. 

The outdoor mural will be installed on the west facing facade of the University's Campus Center, a high profile location on the main campus. The mural dimensions will be approximately 48x12 ft. The postmodern industrial deco imagery of elements in the mural, were developed through sculptural collaborations with partner Joel Heidel. 

The concept for the mural design is based on the environmental consequences of industry - a contemplation on issues that are of immediate concern. The work relates to UMass Dartmouth in a very contemporary manner by acknowledging immediate and continuous global situations and connects to the history of UMass Dartmouth in the context of textiles and fabric design. The work has the appeal of "Batik," a printed fabric method. 

"The mural expresses concern about global warming through intense color usage," said Angelina Heidel. "Time is an important element of the work. It speaks of time through use of flowing movement and shadow. With time it is possible to change course, reconstruct and resolve issues. This piece is about the possible harmony of industry and nature." 

The mural will be created from a color schematic of 56 custom mixed colors in addition to black and white. The influences for the designers include factories, gears, rivers, and global warming. The canary within the mural is a reference to human kind and all creatures and their survival. 

"Industry is part of the system," said Ms. Heidel. "It is neither good nor bad as we both benefit from it and suffer the consequences. It needs to find balance with the natural world so that nations, communities and the whole of nature can thrive. The idea arriving at this balance is explored through the morphing of industrial and natural elements such as seen in the stylization of birds, fish, grasses, gears and struts." 

The Mural is the latest initiative in the campus-wide Living Gallery Project launched by Chancellor Grossman to re-imagine the university as an artistic and architectural destination. In April 2014 the Living Gallery took its initial step with the installation of "Gerry's Window" by sculptor, landscape artist and College of Visual & Performing Arts (CVPA) Alumnus Ron Rudnicki. "Gerry's Window" is a stone and steel work, located in the center of the nautilus bench adjacent to the CVPA Building on the university's main campus. In December CVPA Professor Eric Lintala installed a new sculpture located in the University's Claire T. Carney Library Living Room, "Tower Spirits", as the latest addition to the Living Gallery Project. 

"Tower Spirits" and "Gerry's Window" have coincided with a series of pilot projects this year, which include scheduled lightings of the Robert Karam Campanile, the bell tower that stands between the Claire T. Carney Library and the Foster Administration building. Modernist architect Paul Rudolph, who designed the UMass Dartmouth campus in the early 1960s, included the campanile in his earliest sketches, as it was very important to his vision. An additional pilot project was the installation of hanging gardens completed in time for last year's Commencement Exercises. Hanging gardens were part of Paul Rudolph's original design so much so that mechanisms to support the gardens were installed and remain to this day. 

There is a planned expansion of the hanging gardens inside the University's Liberal Arts Building. More recently, a whale mural was installed on the front of UMass Dartmouth's Claire T. Carney Library last week by Tape Art in Providence, RI. 

UMass Dartmouth distinguishes itself as a vibrant public university actively engaged in personalized teaching and innovative research, and acting as an intellectual catalyst for regional economic, social, and cultural development. UMass Dartmouth's mandate to serve its community is realized through countless partnerships, programs, and other outreach efforts to engage the community, and apply its knowledge to help address local issues and empower others to facilitate change for all.

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