Entries for unique Fitton Center project coming from all over the world: How to get involved

The Fitton Center for Creative Arts has extended the deadline to submit butterflies for a collaborative, mosaic mural project, “Wings of Hope” until May 7.

“With this overwhelming response we have expanded the project from one column onto four columns at the south end of the pergola. We also extended the butterfly deadline to Friday, May 7 to give more time for those who want to be a part of this collaborative mosaic mural project. I have begun to build out the first column and post updates to our Facebook group. We are now looking at a June installation after the Currents Exhibition ends,” said Lori Kay Farr, mural artist, educator, and project leader of “Wings of Hope.”

There are local artists participating as well as those from abroad. As of April 17, 565 butterflies have been submitted from 22 states and several countries, including the United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, Brazil, and Mexico. The initial goal was to receive 100 to 200 butterflies.

“We have artists that are beginners, or maybe somebody who just likes to do it as a hobby. Then, we also have artists that are submitting butterflies that are professional mosaic artists. So, it is all ranges and all skill levels being brought together,” Farr said, “I don’t believe we’ll have any two butterflies that will be alike, kind of like a snowflake.”

“Wings of Hope” is a mosaic mural that will be made up of tiled butterflies and flowers. Designed to convey a message of hope, Farr said her idea was to have a collection of butterflies made from single-color values, created by different artists from all over the world, and in the United States, including past Fitton Center students, area school students, and through open engagement.

Artists and community members can get involved by making single-color butterflies that range in size from two to six inches wide. Light and pale blues should not be used, because that will be the background color used to fill in around the butterflies. Some artists may choose to create more than one butterfly, while others will make a butterfly in memory of someone.

“Wings of Hope has just exploded. We are at nearly 600 butterflies,” said Ian MacKenzie-Thurley, executive director of the Fitton Center.

An instructional video is available on the Fitton Center’s website and on social media channels for those who would like more instructions on how to make a butterfly. A downloadable template is also available online.

An initial call to artists went out online and there has been a positive response from artists across the globe. The Fitton Center also held a community butterfly-making day in April. Once all of the butterflies are made and received, the mural will be assembled on site at the Fitton Center.

“Many times, the packages include a note about how being able to do this project has impacted them. I have been keeping a log of all who have participated in this project. We had over 60 people attend Wings of Hope butterfly maker day on Saturday, April 10. We made 82 butterflies in four hours. I will also be doing an engagement with River Summit in hopes to make about 100 more,” Farr said.

Finished butterflies can be dropped off or mailed to Lori Kay Farr, 1070 Pond Ridge Circle, Hamilton, OH 45013 by the extended deadline of Friday, May 7. The installation is expected to be completed by June (weather permitting.) Wings of Hope will be a permanent installation at the Fitton Center.

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