CINCINNATI- (Sept. 20, 2011) – The ArtWorks mural has been catching the attention of baseball fans and downtown drivers for weeks, but will it was officially dedicated last night.
The riff on Frank Duveneck’s “The Cobbler’s Apprentice” was designed by lead ArtWorks Mural Project artist Tim Parsley and uses the Duveneck painting, part of the Taft Museum of Art’s collection, as a starting point. In a nod to Great American Ball Park just a short walk away, the “apprentice” is holding a baseball bat rather than the cigar and basket of shoe-making supplies and vegetables featured in Duveneck’s original.
The mural resulted from a partnership among ArtWorks, the Taft Museum of Art, Carter, Dawson (developers and equity partners of The Banks), and USAA Real Estate Co.
The mural, at 120 E. Freedom Way at Walnut Street, is on the building that houses the new Police Welcome Center. It faces north and can be seen from Second Street. It will be visible for an indefinite time, but a new office building is scheduled eventually to block it from view. No construction date has been announced.
The mural was created as a part of ArtWorks’ Summer Program, in which apprentice artists aged 14-21 are hired to work with professional artists on large-scale public art projects. In addition to Parsley, two teaching artists and 12 apprentice artists worked over a series of five weeks to complete the mural this summer.
Parsley said his playful re-interpretation “is full of rich historical meaning, both socially and artistically.”
“Socially it speaks to the history of the labor classes that helped build a city like Cincinnati. Artistically, it celebrates Cincinnati’s history by honoring one of its most respected painters.”