BRADENTON – The Going Vertical mural project has unveiled its debut Manatee County mural. "FL," by renowned mural artist MTO, is on display at the historic Alina Motel at 6926 15th Street East, which has been renovated to house a transitional recovery facility. The enigmatic artist had already created a major splash in the region with his controversial Sarasota mural titled Fast Life.
The German-based street painter is known only by his MTO signature and precious few details are available beyond the fact that he's a native of France, who grew up in Paris. During the 2011 Going Vertical project, MTO created several murals in Sarasota, including the aforementioned Fast Life, which formerly covered one side of the Tube Dude headquarters. Another, Dr. Robin, was painted nearby on the side of the Sarasota Architectural Salvage building and taken as a response to the reaction over Fast Life.
FL depicts the letters of Florida's postal abbreviation via acrobatic clowns. In Europe, Red or auguste clowns, are closer to the traditional jesters common to American carnival culture, while white or blanc clowns are the serious sort, known to give direction to their prankster cohorts. On the painting, the clowns hang from what appear to be drawstrings of a hoodie. The image is similar to a scene at the Sarasota Chalk Festival, where acrobats performed on red streamers in honor of the theme, Circus City. The figure is holding a spray paint can and a camera. Check out the photo gallery below to see more images of new mural.
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