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Philly Artist Designs Mural for MU

Members of university help paint the sections of the mural


by Rebecca Hazen - March 24, 2016

Students, professors and employees at Mansfield University helped Philadelphia based muralist Jonathan Laidacker paint sections of a mural on Sunday, March 20, that will be installed later this spring.

Mural painting

Laidacker, who is a 2003 Mansfield University graduate, was approached last year through Facebook by art professor Michelle Schlegel to help design a mural for the university.


“Michelle had in mind where she wanted the mural to be. I came up and met her and checked out the wall, and we came up with the design after about four or five months of back and forth discussion,” Laidacker said.

Mural painting_2

The mural will be installed on a wall between Manser Dining Hall and North Hall Library. On one end the design features the history of the university, with football players honoring the first night football game under electric lights, the Mansfield Creed in the middle, which is Character, Scholarship, Culture and Service, and features students and some of the current dorm buildings on the other side.

Mural painting_3

“I did the design in Photoshop first in proportion to the wall. One inch equals one foot on the wall and we are working on five foot by five foot inch sheets,” Laidacker said.

Mural painting_1

Mansfield University members were able to participate in the painting process. Laidacker had drawn out every line on each of the sheets, and all participants had to do was follow a paint by numbers process. Each section had its own number with a corresponding paint color that had been pre mixed.

Mural painting_4

“I work for the Philadelphia Mural Arts Program, which is an educational non-profit, so having people help paint the murals is a natural component for each project,” Laidacker said.

When the sheets are fully painted, Laidacker will glue the paper right onto the wall. “The paper is polyester acrylic material. It goes on in a real similar way to wallpaper. I will even use wallpaper scrapers to put it on.”

Laidacker hopes to install it at the end of April or beginning of May. “I actually just did a mural for my high school. Now I’m doing one for my college and I’m coming full circle.”

Those interested can check out the progress of the mural, and other works, on Laidacker’s artist Facebook page, listed under Jonathan Laidacker.



Produced by Vogt Media

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