Trailing the Trinity: Clearfork Main Street Bridge

Submitted by Devon Nowlin

0

Client: Fort Worth Public Art

Location: Fort Worth, TX, United States

Completion date: 2013

Artwork budget: $65,000

Project Team

Public Art Agent

Tommy Fitzpatrick

Artist

Devon Nowlin

Overview

“Trailing the Trinity” is a mural completed in automotive enamel on aluminum panels at approximately 11.5 x 32 feet wide. It is a triptych depicting the ranch heritage of a large plot of land newly developed in Fort Worth. The primary audience is comprised of trail bikers and runners on the Trinity Trail network, referenced in the center panel. The right panel looks forward to the future of enhanced water recreation in the city, with the downtown skyline referencing the new Trinity River Vision. Uniting the three panels is a river element that maps the forks of the Trinity.

Goals

The mural is mounted on the abutment wall of a vehicular bridge that faces out to a pedestrian bridge suspended below. The abutment walls were identified early in the project as the primary location for an artwork. The media I selected, automotive paint, works thematically well with the nature of the site and gave me and my partner the largest "canvas" for the site with our given budget. As a figurative artist, I was selected for an encouraged to utilize my figurative and narrative storytelling skills to address the goals of the stakeholders in the project who expressed the desire for a fusion of historical commemoration with envisioning a new future ahead.

Process

I worked closely with a fellow artist on the project, Tommy Fitzpatrick, who completed a second mural on the opposite side of the bridge. Tommy and I produced compatible works that shared a relationship with the site while retaining our individual artistic visions. I served as Tommy's artist assistant and project manager for the completion of his companion mural, "Oxbow Traces." We partnered with a classic car and motorsport automotive painter, Juan Porras, to fabricate the murals. We designed the imagery in vector graphics so that the work could be painted using a series of vinyl masks, making coordination with our painter precise and seamless.