The beautiful mural that enlivens the Marshall Street entrance into downtown Shreveport has a name and a date for its official ‘opening’. The Marshall Street underpass mural now known as ‘Ascension Underpass’ will open to the public on Thursday, Aug. 4 at 5:30 pm. Come meet the artists Ben Moss, Ka’Davien Baylor, Eric Francis, and Willie A. Love, and see the colorful art up close.
Story from Even in its early stages, the Marshall Street Underpass Mural is garnering lots of public attention and even more photos. Here are a few great ones from this week-
Here’s the story of the Marshall Street underpass mural-
If you drive into downtown by way of Marshall Street, you are familiar with the unattractive section under I-20. A magnet for graffiti and trash, it has never been a welcoming entrance into the city’s center; it feels more like a barricade than an invitation to enter.
That is in the process of changing. The Greater Shreveport Chamber of Commerce’ Leadership Class decided some months ago that they wanted to turn the columns of the elevated roadway into vibrant, welcoming art – and they have been rallying supporters and sponsors to their cause.
An early and influential advocate of the project was Councilwoman LeVette Fuller, the District B rep who has been supportive of murals and beautification efforts throughout her district. She was able to jumpstart the effort with some funding made available to all the council districts. The Chamber Leadership class also asked friends, businesses and other supporters for donations to help pay the tab on their project and a number of businesses and other entities eagerly signed on with both donations of money and in-kind support.
What made the decision much easier to support was that muralist and artist Ka’Davien (KD) Baylor was part of the Leadership group this year. KD has a long history of serious, large-scale, on-budget commercial works. He knows how to plan for them, the equipment, paint and time needed for completion and how to tutor and motivate a team of artists who might have different levels of mural experience and ability. He coordinated a team that includes Ben Moss, Eric Francis and Willie Love, all wonderful artists in their own right.
The first order of business was power washing the underside of the interstate. We are going to go out on a limb and say that this has never been done before on this portion of the interstate. Once the crew had a clean surface to work with, the paint application began.
The mural is intentionally colorful to counteract the drab and shaded surroundings and the butterflies that will be painted on different poles will express the ‘aspirations of continued positive transformation of the Shreveport/Bossier City community.’
The artists are predicting a 60 day work schedule and afterward will be the dedication. By the way, there is still no name for the work, so if you have a great one, let us know and we will forward it.