Greg McCorkle
This building, known for years as Atlas Heating, was for 25 years or so, from 1952 to 1977 home to the White Center News and Robinson Newspapers. It was painted in colorful style on Saturday during the White Center Spring Clean. CLICK THE PHOTO ABOVE TO SEE MORE

White Center becomes an open air street gallery

Murals begun during Spring Clean will continue; Up to 25 may grace local walls

On Saturday, what will become a walking gallery, the first three of a total twenty five murals were painted in White Center.

Put in motion by the White Center Chamber of Commerce and championed by chamber president Mark Ufkes, the goal is to help give a sense of identity to the community. “We hope that with twenty five murals around town, White Center could become a destination place. People would come and walk around our community”. Mr. Ufkes went on to say “Beautiful art on the street makes you happy and we should do more of what makes us happy”.

Many White Center property owners are seeing the value of public murals. Murals actually go a long way in deterring random graffiti and are an inexpensive thing to do. A good example is the 17th Ave side of White Center Glass. A mural covering the entire side of the building was painted two years ago and is still graffiti free.

The three locations painted on Saturday are;
The large retaining wall west of 16th Ave SW on SW 107th Ave. was done by Mark Ufkes with the help of several local artists and members of his Boy Scout troop.

The VFW building on 17th Ave SW north of SW Roxbury St.

Organized by Brittany Trujillo of Seattle Printing. Brittany brought together five artists that created four separate works on the front of the building. Brittany was able to get the building owner to re paint the awning over the sidewalk.

The Atlas Heating and Air-conditioning building at 9811 17th Ave SW.

The project was managed by Malos Auto body’s Brad Truesdale. Artist Michael Harrison was recruited by Mark Ufkes after seeing Michael’s website. “Patrick Robinson (West Seattle Herald) came to my show at Twilight Artist Collective in the junction and told Mark to go to my site”.

Mr. Ufkes was so taken by Michael’s style he asked Michael to be the artist for the Atlas building. Helping out on the Atlas building was Mr. Truesdale’s stepson Triston Conlon and Michael Harrison’s friend Mike Stacek who likes to be called a “Neighborhood Professional”. For a moment by moment slide show of the Atlas building go to Michael Harrison’s site at- http://wp.me/pBKVZ-fn
Saturday was Mark Ufkes’s birthday. “I’d like to think of this project as my birthday present to White Center”.

Keep your eye on White Center over the summer. Things are going to get very colorful.

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