The repainted mural
The repainted mural

The controversy over Carrboro's Community Mural came to a poetic, if puzzling, conclusion recently when the mural was unceremoniously repainted to meet the requirements of local ordinances.

Arts enthusiast Catherine DeVine came up with an idea to put a poetic spin on the controversial project as a way of keeping the original design of the mural intact. More than happy to oblige, a poem consisting of enough words to insert into each space in violation of Carrboro's sign ordinance, was written by Carrboro's Poet Laureate, Patrick Herron, and titled "I Am Not A Wall." Herron dedicated the poem to Carrboro Mayor Mike Nelson, a strong supporter of the arts and current board liason to the Carrboro Art Committee.

It was the desire of the Art Committee to leave as much of the original mural as was possible. Most of the art was left undisturbed with only business names or logos containing names revised. Words are painted into each spot that needed revision. Each of these spots is numbered to help piece together the puzzle that makes up the poem.

The original completed mural
The original completed mural

The mural, brainchild of Kimberly Matin of Metallorgy (former owner of Zodi Gallery), was originally created during the 2002 Carrboro Music Festival. Designed as a fundraising project for Club Nova, a group home in Carrboro, a ruling by the Appearance Commission determined that the mural as it was violated local ordinances prohibiting logos or ads of this type on a wall that did not house the business being advertised.

A resolution was passed in May to extend the deadline imposed for completing the repainting to September 28, 2003, a year after the original creation. The repainting, which was done by the original mural coordinator, artist Emily Weinstein, took longer than stipulated in the resolution, but is now in compliance with local sign ordinances.

The mural is located at 105 East Main St., behind the Carrboro Century Center, on the side of Jade Palace restaurant.

The repainted mural

I Am Not A Wall
for Mike Nelson

When
the
wheels
of
stone
spin,
their grind
slowly
unbinds
me
free
from
the
rock
I have been.
I am sprung
atom
by
atom.
I am
decomposed,
I am
stirred
into
root
and
softly
charged
clouds.
Discover me
freely
by my
faint
indirections.

By Patrick Herron
Copyrighted 2004

History of the Mural · The Mural Controversy · The Mural Repaint · A Poetic Conclusion


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