The red stencil painting of a cyclist on the white wall of Bike Works in downtown Fredericksburg is getting a facelift from two local artists and five area high school students.
Project leaders Mirinda Reynolds and Carol Coffman will start painting the mural in August. The mural will depict a view of Fredericksburg looking from Chatham Manor. There will also be a young woman on a bicycle and Reynolds said although it will have a modern look, the mural will resemble a postcard from the 1930s. The year the city was established—1728—will also be on the mural.
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"It is basically going to welcome drivers into our city," she said.
Although Reynolds said she gets inspiration from around the world, the G40 Summit in Richmond was a project she admired. Reynolds is an art teacher at Fredericksburg Academy and Coffman is an art teacher at Shirley C. Heim Middle School.
On Tuesday, Reynolds and Coffman selected five high school students who will get scholarships to be a part of a mentor program. Reynolds said 35 students applied for the scholarships.
"They will be painting the mural with us," Reynolds said.
Fredericksburg City Council and the Fredericksburg Arts Commission agreed to fund the $7,500 400-foot mural on the building at 104 William St.
Reynolds said she came up with the idea four years ago and put in several years of diligent work into getting the project to this point. She needed to get approval from the city for the funding and get Bike Works owner Tom Eskam and the the Sale family, which owns the building, to agree on the mural design.
"I feel very lucky that all these things came together," Reynolds said.
At the end of this month there will be crews removing ivy that has grown on the building wall. Crews will remove the old paint and add primer for the mural. Then the duo and the five students will begin painting the mural in August.
"Mural art is a passion that I have. I've been painting murals since I was 2," Reynolds said. "My first mural was a choo-choo train all around my room and I got in trouble for that."
Coffman is a former member of Arts First Gallery and has been doing commercial and private murals for years. She received her Master’s of Interdisciplinary Studies in Interdisciplinary Art from Virginia Commonwealth University and her Bacherlor's of Fne Arts (BFA) from VCU in Art Education and a BFA in Studio Art, with a concentration in painting and drawing from James Madison University. She has commissioned several portraits, murals, and a game board design. Her mediums of choice are acrylic, watercolor, and colored pencil. She also explores printmaking and ceramics.
Reynolds opened her first studio in the Athenaeum in 2007. In 2008, she joined the LibertyTown Arts Workshop. In 2010, she joined the Sophia Street Studios. The Creative Side at 513 Jackson St., where she also teaches, opened in 2011. She has a mural that is in Olde Towne Butcher that owners Lee and Linda Russell decided to keep when they replaced the hair salon that used to be in the building on William Street. You can read more about Reynolds's career here.