2008/01/29

Michael Webb; Architectural Muralist


Michael Webb

is the artist who's murals have become a familiar and loved part of my Philadelphia scape; I look forward to seeing them every time I pass one of them, and that can be several times a week. Michael included a self-portrait, at work, in the Beasley Building Mural.

I was charmed by his presentation of his work this evening at the historic Carpenter's Building, his talk was titled Buildings on Buildings; the Painting of Architectural Murals. He is an artist with the Mural Arts Program.



















Asked how he plans the figures in his work, he says he sketches them from his imagination, to scale. Once he is satisfied with the design, he will find a model to pose for a photograph. He uses his original sketch when he transfers the figures to the gridded wall; and then only will he or his assistants make any final adjustments using the photo references. This is what keeps his figure work so fresh, rather than projecting photos to enlarge onto the wall.
His own website is sparse; so I'm posting some photos of mine, and several by others I found on flickr; from zepfanman.com, mancalaura, and lb_philly

Click to see these much larger.
These two are murals that depict the *ghost* of St. James Epsicopal Church, that used to occupy this block at 22 and Walnut; its now occupied by Sunoco who commissioned the mural from Susan Maxman and Michael Webb.
The *bricks* are all painted; this is meticulous trompe l'oeil.

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