Artist Ernesto Maranje completes new mural on Fire Station 4
City officials and members of the Johnson City Public Art Committee (JCPAC) gathered at Fire Station 4, 800 Main St., on Friday, Sept. 2 for a meet-and-greet and photos with artist Ernesto Maranje in celebration of his mural installation, "Stopping by the Woods."
The JCPAC commissioned Maranje for the project earlier this year after conducting an artist selection process. Following a request for qualifications in early March, a mural selection committee comprised of community members and representatives from the JCPAC reviewed submissions and selected three semi-finalists to develop mural proposals. The semi-finalists presented their proposals to the selection committee, and Maranje was selected as the finalist for the project.
Maranje’s design features native wildlife including the black bear, white-tailed deer, and several birds. The selection committee was highly impressed by his unique artistic style, his ability to bring a graceful flourish of plant life into all elements of his design, and his appreciation for the convergence of art and the natural world.
Spread across the side and back walls of Fire Station 4 on the edge of Kiwanis Park, the mural faces University Parkway and Market Street. The mural design is intended to serve as a point of inspiration for the surrounding community, relating to the themes of resilience, growth, and transformation. The constant growth and metamorphosis present in nature parallel the personal and societal changes that propel the community forward. The two mammals represented in the mural also serve as symbolic elements as the black bear is often associated with courage, strength, and authoritativeness, and the deer is a symbol of gentleness, sensitivity, and intuition.
To learn more about the Johnson City Public Art Committee, visit https://jcpublicart.com/.