Client: Riverscape MetroParks
Location: Dayton, OH, United States
Completion date: 2020
Artwork budget: $3,500
Riverscape Metro Parks
The Conemporary Dayton
MetroParks Riverscape Sewer Riser, June 2021, Design and Paint, Nature Scene – 4’ x 19’ cylinder, plus a 7‘ diameter top. Mural design and painting by Gae Helton thru the Contemporary Dayton – June 2021
Graphic waves representing the rapids sweep across the sides of the structure. Whimsical depictions of the water life native to Ohio river systems — crayfish, catfish, turtle, frog, diving kingfisher, sunfish and green darters — complete the sides. The top of the structure pulls together the upper gardens of RiverScape MetroPark with the lower portion of the park by the river.
The mural will transform an unsightly concrete manhole cover, located near the RiverScape River Run whitewater feature, into a vibrant piece of public art. The mural is part of the River Run Terrace project, which provides new amenities on RiverScape MetroPark’s south shore that complement the whitewater feature. Terraced limestone seating, which allows visitors to relax while watching people surf and paddle in the river. Helton’s mural design, inspired by the Great Miami River, connects with the river and its ecosystem.
“This public art project will make RiverScape MetroPark, known as ‘Dayton’s front porch,’ an even more vibrant place,” said Meredith Adamisin, RiverScape MetroPark manager. “Gae Helton’s design is bright, meaningful and rewards curiosity. Public art connects viewers to something significant — in this case, inspiring a personal connection to nature in our region’s urban core — and creates a sense of place and community pride. This mural, with its thoughtful depiction of nature, will bring park visitors closer to the Great Miami River and encourage them to stay awhile.”
The Co Dayton published a request for proposals for a painted design to cover a storm sewer riser located at RiverScape MetroPark. Gae Helton’s design was chosen from 11 submissions. There was one round of alterations to brighten the color palette.