Why you’ll soon see hundreds of butterflies at Hamilton’s Fitton Center

The Fitton Center for Creative Arts has announced a community project that will bring artists of all skill levels together, both locally and abroad, with a message of hope conveyed in the Wings of Hope mosaic mural project.

“All of these butterflies will be brought together and assembled as a rainbow, bursting from these flowers onto the columns at the Fitton Center. The idea is that they’ll be uplifting, offering hope that we will survive what we’ve been through,” said Lori Kay Farr, mural artist, educator, and project leader of Wings of Hope.

Her idea is to have a collection of butterflies made from single-color values, created by different artists from all over the world, including past Fitton Center students, area school students, and through open engagement.

“There is a sense of ownership and community pride, knowing that I participated in something that is here, and that’s going to stay here so other people can see it,” Farr said.

Wings of Hope will give artists an opportunity to work on individual pieces of the project from home, remaining physically distanced, while contributing to the project.

“During a time when many people feel incredibly isolated, I think projects like this are important to generate hope and positivity and they use the arts as a way to unite, even when we can’t be together physically,” said Kate Rowekamp, director of education at the Fitton Center.

Wings of Hope is a mosaic mural that will be made up of tiled butterflies and flowers. Once complete, the mural will be placed on one of the rounded poles of the Monument Avenue pergola at the Fitton Center.

Artists and community members can get involved by making single-color butterflies that range in size from 2 inches to 6 inches wide. Light or pale blues will not be used because that will be the sky/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.

An instructional video is available on the Fitton Center’s website and on social media channels. Additionally, a community butterfly-making day will be held at the Fitton Center on April 10 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. To reserve a time, go to https://www.fittoncenter.org/wings-of-hope.

Once all of the butterflies are made and received, the mural will be assembled on site at the Fitton Center.

“I love the collaborative part about everyone sending them in, and one artist overseeing how they are placed all together,” Farr said.

An artist call went out online, and Farr said there has already been a positive response from artists that want to participate globally, from Australia, New Zealand, Brazil, and Mexico as well as throughout the United States and the United Kingdom. In all, she is hoping to receive 100 to 200 butterflies. If the butterflies fill more than one column, the project will expand onto a second column.

Finished butterflies can be dropped off or mailed to Lori Kay Farr, 1070 Pond Ridge Circle in Hamilton, by mid-April. The installation is expected to be completed by mid-May as a permanent installation at the Fitton Center.

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