By: Alexis Cope
A new mural celebrating the natural habitats of Cary has appeared on a tunnel in Davis Drive Park’s White Oak greenway.
Created by mural artist Lisa Gaither, the painting features depictions of wildlife native to North Carolina. The flowering dogwood, North Carolina’s state flower, is visible to the right and is joined by yellow and red honeysuckles, which adorn the archway. The tiger swallowtail, the state butterfly, and a gray squirrel, the state mammal, are also depicted.
The other side of the bridge is yet to be completed but will feature images of residents biking, jogging, and enjoying all that the greenway has to offer. This side will also be painted in a different art style so those passing under the bridge may experience two distinct works.
Gaither has painted many murals all throughout the Triangle, and even has one in Charleston, South Carolina. Self-taught, Gaither specializes in interactive artwork and “believes that art not only belongs in a gallery or museum but that it can and should be enjoyed by everyone.” This mural certainly is being enjoyed; when I visited, many who passed by were awed by this new addition on the greenway.
Cary is known to have many art installations within its borders, which often feature local artists. The Black Creek Greenway features brick sculptures created by artist Brad Spencer, and Rachel Herrick’s pooch-themed fire hydrants can be found all over town. Downtown Cary often plays host to a number of temporary installations, as well as permanent ones. Recently, in celebration of the Chinese Lantern Festival, a series of six groups of glowing, lantern animals took up residence along Academy Street, only to be replaced by another illuminating work: a metal bonsai tree with a single cardinal upon its branches.
Cary’s care for beautification, attention to local artists, and desires to provide residents with new, lovely additions to their town, is clear with Gaither’s new project. When finished, the murals are sure to be wonderful, representative works which those using the greenway will surely enjoy.
If you would like to view Gaither’s latest mural, visit Davis Drive Park at 1610 Davis Drive.
For more information about Gaither, visit her website: https://www.lisagaitherart.comFor more information about more art installations around Cary, visit: https://www.townofcary.org/recreation-enjoyment/arts-culture/public-art/all