The following was submitted by Jason Silva, chief administrative aide in the office of Mayor Kim Driscoll:
Mayor Kimberley Driscoll is pleased to announce that internationally renowned pop artist Kenny Scharf will be painting a mural in Salem on Monday, May 14. The mural will be painted on a portion of the downtown parking garage and will transform the bland fašade into a colorful work of art. He will begin painting around 8 a.m. and wrap up in the late afternoon, and will be available for media during a lunch break around noon.
"I am thrilled to welcome Kenny Scharf to Salem. Salem is a vibrant arts community and Kenny's mural will be one more testament to that fact. The arts play an important role in our community. The arts create new ways to connect with others and experience our city," Driscoll said. "Our annual film, poetry, literary, art, and jazz & soul festivals draw thousands of locals and visitors to town. And throughout the year, people can enjoy world class art at the Peabody Essex Museum, a play at the Salem Theatre Company, a dance performance at Salem State University, murals in the Point Neighborhood, live music at a local venue, or area artists at Artists' Row.
"In response to public demand, we have been looking at opportunities to bring more public art to Salem - on both a temporary and long-term basis. Last year we hosted a temporary sculpture installation by Massachusetts artist Rob Lorenson. And as part of this year's Arts Festival in June, we will welcome the first of six artists that will be painting utility boxes over the summer.
"Kenny's mural is one more way we are bringing art to the public, and his mural will add a new and colorful dimension to downtown. Kenny has worked all over the world and we are fortunate that he has agreed to share his talent with us. I hope you will take advantage of this unique opportunity to see Kenny at work on May 14 and welcome him to Salem."