A mural is taking wing in downtown Sedalia, with the possibility of inspiring other artists to dip their brushes in a street art concept to beautify the area’s alleyways and buildings.

The idea, two large angel-like wings made from paintbrushes, originated with Sedalia artist Lucas Richardson, also a Ward 3 city councilman.

“This was my concept,” he said Wednesday evening. “I thought about it and said, ‘this would be a cool idea, I should do this.’”

Richardson said he didn’t want to draw the concept, so he asked Cameron Hoehns to render the idea on paper and “make it visual.”

“Over 20 minutes of texting, we came up with this vision,” he noted. “We said, ‘that’s what we want, that’s what a pair of wings made out of paintbrushes (should look like).’”

Richardson said he spoke to Dustin Schmidt, co-organizer of NoBro Art Events, about “Instagramable” locations around the downtown area.

“It had been a conversation with him and I on a few occasions,” Richardson added. “It would be an interactive way for people to come downtown and be a part of downtown.”

After Richardson came up with the concept and Hoehns rendered it, artist Kelsey Raines reached out to the pair.

“She said she was interested in doing some downtown art,” Richardson noted. “I thought, ‘well I actually need that, I need a set of hands, I need an artist to work with.’”

The three received permission from Nikki Hill, owner of The Ohio Hair Co., to paint the mural in the alleyway on the south side of her building.

The trio decided to paint the mural toward the back of the building so it would be more “participatory.” Those wishing to see it would need to walk down the alley a bit.

“Then people could explore the alley area like a scavenger hunt,” Richardson explained.

He added the mural will also be a photo op since they plan to have their Instagram handles tagged on the piece.

“This is kind of our flagship alley … the coffee shop helps and Nikki Hill just being onboard with the arts and NoBro artists,” Richardson explained. “She has definitely been a big help pushing the art events in her shop. She’s definitely a vehicle for our artistic platform.”

Hoehns said the wings theme is already a popular idea and “finding a way to spin it” with the paintbrushes made it their own.

“Sedalia, I feel, is already culturally very into the arts,” she noted. “We have a great museum already. So, finding a way to give local artists a chance to encourage other local artists to do work, it’s a dream that this will snowball into more public art and more interaction.  

“It’s nice to see a revival of this whole downtown area,” she continued. “If we can keep adding to that and getting people to come down here, let’s revive history and make it our own.”

Raines said the mural took about 12 to 15 hours to create.

“I worked mostly in the morning because it would get too hot,” she added. “It was really fun to make and I enjoyed collaborating. We all worked together really well.

“Hopefully it leads to more street art,” she continued. “I want to do more murals. I have a little Art by Kelsey Raines business and I’ve always done portraits. But now I’m really wishing to do more murals and larger scale paintings.”

Richardson said he hopes to generate more “foot traffic to explore” downtown.

“To poke around, and explore and be an adventurer of downtown,” he added.

He is looking for additional locations for future murals.

“(City Planner) Raeanne Spears with downtown development, she’s pushing for more art projects,” he noted. “We have a lot of artists … but we need more as a community, we need more art as a community.”

Arts & Entertainment Reporter

Faith Bemiss is a reporter for the Sedalia Democrat, covering general assignment, arts, food and entertainment stories. She can be reached at 660-530-0289.

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