Jackson County

Two artists will bring life to buildings in downtown Pascagoula

Alan Watson will paint this image, enlarged to 8 by 20 feet, on the north wall of City Hall, background.
Alan Watson will paint this image, enlarged to 8 by 20 feet, on the north wall of City Hall, background. klnelson@sunherald.com

Downtown is going to look more alive. And that’s the point.

Two local artists have been hired to paint murals on downtown walls. The idea is to add “pizzazz” to courtyards and parking lots.

It’s about attraction — more public art, and tourists or locals who might want to have their picture taken in front of them, said Jen Dearman, city economic development director.

There are some great buildings downtown, and this ought to liven things up a bit, she said.

Following #WeArePascagoula on Twitter is one way to track the city’s trend. It approved $3,200 for the work this week.

Artists Alan Watson and Brenda Kitchens are taking on the task.

Kitchens’ work can be seen around town on utility boxes and at festivals. Watson’s work is handled by Innova Arts in Mobile. .

Watson’s mural will be the larger, in art deco style with latex and oils. He plans to use house paint and stencils for the forms, overlaid with glazes of color.

He will mark off in a grid the 8-by-20-foot section designated for the mural. Look for it soon on the red-brick north wall of City Hall.

Watson, a lifelong artist and Pascagoula native, said Italian Renaissance is his love, and he must have figures in his works.

He said he’s honored to have been chosen.

Kitchens just finished a 45-foot Eiffel Tower on a building in Paris, Tennessee. She is known locally for her water and boat scenes.

She said she has painted since she was a child but lost interest after undergoing chemotherapy treatments.

It was a commission for a shrimp boat on Bayou La Batre, Alabama, that got her going again and she hasn’t slowed down.

Her work will adorn the beige-brick courtyard wall just east of City Hall. She uses marine-grade paint, which resists fading.

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