Skip to main content

The City Journals

Meet the artists responsible for South Salt Lake’s Mural Fest 2019

May 20, 2019 12:03PM ● By Holly Vasic

Traci O’Very Covey in front of her mural titled “Habitat” at South Salt Lake’s Mural Fest. (Holly Vasic/City Journals)

By Holly Vasic | [email protected]

On May 11, artists and those who appreciate art gathered at The Commonwealth Room at 195 W. 2100 South in South Salt Lake, for the city’s second annual Mural Fest. The murals are painted on various locations throughout South Salt Lake’s industrial area commissioned by The Utah Arts Alliance, South Salt Lake Arts Council and the businesses who agreed to the art on their buildings.  

Art enthusiasts had the opportunity to take a tour of 10 new murals and meet the artists with the help of a walking or biking map. For those who missed out on the festivities, the map can be found on Mural Fest’s website www.utaharts.org/mural-fest

Billy Hensler, who participated last year, is the artist behind the first mural on the map, a piece painted on the east wall of The Commonwealth Room. Hensler considered what the building was when he began working on the piece. “I knew this was a music venue so I wanted something exciting,” Hensler said. 

The third stop on that map, Shades Brewing at 154 W. Utopia Ave., got a facelift from artist Chuck Landvatter, another past participant, who has painted some 20 murals that can be seen at The Gateway and other Salt Lake City locations. 

Trent Call had to work during the night to complete his mural on the Beehive Distilling building, located at 2285 S. Main St. and just off the TRAX line. He had to work when the train wasn’t running to be able to use the forklift to complete the piece, which is at stop six on the map. Call had applied to paint the mural to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the Golden Spike, which occurred a day prior to the Mural Fest. His goal was “painting a mural about trains with no trains,” Call said. 

Giant gnomes now greet customers and passersby of Sugarpost Metal, 80 W. Truman Ave. and stop eight on the map, thanks to artist Josh Sheuerman. His inspiration came from Sugarpost Metal’s unique lawn ornaments known as gnome-be-gones. Sheuerman explained the owner of Sugarpost has been making the lawn sculptures for years. 

“He came up with the idea of creatures coming in the night and stealing the gnomes,” Sheuerman said. “They have been so proficient over the years that I thought that I’d do the reverse role of making giant Godzilla gnomes that are then destroying the gnome-be-gones.” He said the owners loved the idea. 

Artist Traci O’Very Covey hoped to bring a sense of community to Mountain Land Design, 2345 S. Main St., with her work. Covey called the mural “Habitat.”

“A lot of my art work is about the grace and joy of everyday life,” she said. “We’ve got dogs, and good food, and houses, and community, and the mountains and that’s basically what it’s like. It’s just enjoying your everyday life.” 

The live music, children’s activities, artist’s booths, and murals brought families, neighbors, and friends together to celebrate art. South Salt Lake Council member for District 3, Sharla Bynum, was pleased with the outcome and announced to the crowd that despite some disagreements within the city council about budget and other issues, Mural Fest was something they all agreed on.