Mercer Island mural complete

Art “encapsulates” the beauty of nature on the island.

A new landscape has formed on Mercer Island. The Mercer Island Arts Council put out a call for artists last year for a mural to be painted on the retaining wall that faces the I-90 ramps at Exit 6 on West Mercer Way. The project is one of many funded by the City’s “(1 percent) For Public Art program.”

Rachel Holloway, a local artist, was selected to paint the mural for the project. Holloway has been a muralist, scenic artist, and production designer for the film industry for more than a decade. She and her team of two other artists started the mural Aug. 6.

Her mural “encapsulates” the beauty of nature on the island.

“I sort of sensed that what people would like is a referral to the world around,” Holloway said. “I did get a lot of these little magical moments on Mercer Island where you’re walking around and seeing all this beauty. I just wanted to encapsulate that, that feeling of a timeless place and putting together all the best things.”

Painting a mural on the side of a freeway isn’t as easy as some may think, Holloway said. Without being able to project the images onto the wall, she had to hand-make a template for every single animal and plant in the mural.

It ended up being a blessing in disguise, according to Holloway.

“It’s been brilliant because we were able to just go out with the templates and just start spraying immediately, so mapping out everything was really fast,” she said.

Through the process of painting the mural, she said she has received so much positive feedback and support.

“We get a lot of thumbs up and waving and fortunately nothing really derogatory — but it’s been so positive working,” she said. “The amount of people who are shouting at us, ‘Great job, guys,’ has been so wonderful.”

Holloway hopes people who pass the mural on their way to or from the island feel a sense of peace and tranquility as they see it.

“I know it’s more attractive than a gray concrete wall and I hope that people will feel good seeing it,” she said. “When you’re on your way home you’re sort of honing into tranquility, aren’t you? So you return from the city to nature. It’s a bit of Mercer Island nature sort of welcoming you in and transporting you to that place of beauty and relaxation.”

The mural is now complete and is ready for the public to enjoy. An official unveiling will be on Thursday, Oct. 25 at 4 p.m. with Holloway and her team.

A timelapse video was made to show Holloway and her team’s progress during the mural’s creation.

More in News

File photo
$30 car tab proposal returns to ballot in November

Tim Eyman-led initiative would restrict car tabs and transportation benefit districts in Washington.

Courtesy photo
                                Liat Perlman (left) and Sarah Hobson (right) launched Spirit206 over the summer.
MIHS students launch Spirit206

Spirit206 is a platform for student artists to showcase and sell handmade spirit wear.

A reduced pressure backflow assembly located on a water fill station at the city maintenance yard. Photo courtesy of Brain McDaniel
Backflow assembly tests are overdue

More than 100 sites have yet to report their results.

Mercer Island PD hopes sonar will lead to missing boaters

Cell phones left behind on boat gave little help in narrowing the search area.

File photo
King County alcohol production ordinance could be approved by year’s end

Update to county code has been more than a year in the making.

Mercer Island City Hall. File photo
Council voted to find Mayor in violation of code of ethics

Aug. 20 council meeting held executive session, investigative review of Mayor’s email.

KCSO found all but one of the 108 allegations of excessive or unnecessary use of force were justified

The Office of Law Enforcement Oversight has released its annual 2018 report.

Parts of Mercer Island left without power after car collides with pole

A 41-year-old Seattle woman was allegedly intoxicated when the accident happened.

Most Read