Charley Harper Mural

When my sister Carrie, her husband Doug, and my mom came to town in August, they had a list of a few things they wanted to do. One thing on Carrie’s list was to see the Charley Harper mural at the John Weld Peck Federal Building in Cincinnati. Thankfully she provided a link, because huh?

It turns out that in 2015 the U.S. General Services Administration launched a database of public art held and on display in federal buildings around the country. (Carrie works at the University of Wisconsin in Madison, so she’s kind of tapped into government things.) She searched the database and learned about the Charley Harper mural.

So after a day walking around Findlay Market and Washington Park, we went in search of the Federal Building. After only a little bit of trouble, we found the building, and the other piece of art: an American Eagle on the outside of the building. Then we went in and came to the realization that we were actually in a federal building. So we were asked our business (“To see the mural.”) and went through security.

The mural consists of two panels, each about 13 feet x 18 feet, that are tucked behind a bank of elevators. The right side of the mural is shown above. And you can sort of get the scale from the photo below.

Me, Mom, and sisters Brenda and Carrie

Both panels are just filled with super cool tile animals.

We spent so much time there it was kind of crazy. But there were keys on the wall identifying each of the animals, so that was fun. And we couldn’t get over how each animal was so artistically rendered with simple squares and triangles. Talk about ready-made quilt inspiration!

So, watch out Traveling Companion. Now in addition to checking for local fabric stores whenever I travel, I’ll be looking for potential stops on the federal art database, too. I’m sure there are many more hidden treasures out there!

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4 Comments

  1. I must visit…in excuse since I am only 2 hours away! Thanks fir sharing this magnificent display if CH art! Luv me some CH

    Reply
  2. Kara

     /  September 27, 2017

    That is so cool! I love the alligator. What a great find, way to go Carrie.

    Reply

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