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Saturday, September 23, 2023
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Midnight Mural

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A record-breaking heat wave influenced artists to complete Artesia’s newest addition to Mural Alley during the cover of night.

The Artesia Arts and Cultural District chose a design submitted by New Mexico School for the Arts graduate Simona Rael for a musical mural, recently installed on an enclosure directly next to the pump house of Heritage Plaza. Rael completed the work with the help of her own crew, Kevin “Kause” Allende, Kayla “Kitty” Jones and Lucas “Batty” Romero.

The mural, titled “Sunset Sonata,” depicts two figures in front of a southwestern landscape, as well as a prickly pear and other elements. This piece works together with Oscar Hernandez’ “La Plaza de Musica” completed recently on the Heritage Plaza pump house and, according to a press release from the Arts and Cultural District, “was inspired by New Mexico’s culture, music and colors.”

Rael’s team met at 1 a.m. the first night and at similar hours for two nights after, devoting three sleepless nights to their work. The resulting piece of art shines brightly among the multitude of murals that now embellish the downtown area.

From 6-8 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 17, Artesia MainStreet has planned “The Big Downtown Kick-Off,” during which merchants will be open late and all recently completed murals will be accessible to the public. According to a post on Artesia MainStreet’s Instagram, “student athletes, musicians and artists will be gathering for the fight song, food trucks, late-evening shopping” and “youth soccer and football registration” at The Derrick Floor and other downtown areas. 

Residents who have not yet had an opportunity to view “Sunset Sonata” or the other murals completed this summer are encouraged to attend in support of our artists, athletes and local merchants.

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