It’s time West Seattle, time to restore our murals.
Longtime West Seattleites may look at the murals as treasures that illuminate our past. Newcomers may wonder how they came to be. But no matter how long you have lived here, you likely have noticed the increasing deterioration and attrition of the Murals of West Seattle.
In the decades since the 11 Murals of West Seattle were created, these unique pieces of artwork have brought to life the rich history of much of the Duwamish peninsula. The murals provide unique zest for the area’s identity and are the very definition of tangible community-building.
While the murals still provide inspiration, on the whole they are not in great shape. One severely deteriorated mural was abruptly removed when the owner of the property on which is stood deemed it an eyesore. Extensive graffiti tagging has taken place on three other murals in recent years.
Shadowing these owner decisions and instances of vandalism is the pall cast by the ravages of the elements. Sun, wind and rain, along with the growth of nearby vegetation, has conspired to reduce even the most vivid of the murals to mere echoes of their former beauty.
Mosquito Fleet was restored in 2018. This mural restoration is funded in part by a West Seattle Garden Tour generous $5,000 grant.
The Murals of West Seattle project was led by longtime local business leader Earl Cruzen in 1989-1993.
Earl was a persuasive pied piper in the West Seattle business community, drumming up bare walls, funds from generous building owners and the key ingredient of enthusiasm to bring the project to fruition. Part of the excitement was the ability for everyone to watch the murals come to life and to interact with the visiting muralists as they did their summertime work day after day.
The result was 11 unique art pieces, and for more than a quarter-century, the murals have brought to life the rich history of much of the Duwamish peninsula – the very definition of tangible community-building.
In 2018 we have received a generous gift from Adah Cruzen, the widow of Earl. The funds will serve as a match for the community fundraising. Together we can not only restore the murals to their former vibrant glory, but replace the mural that was removed in 2016.
We’ve already renovated the Morgan Street Market Mural, but we have a long way to go. Our hope to also have funds to keep the murals free of graffiti, but to also begin a foundation fund for the vision of future murals in West Seattle. We hope you can help us!
COMMUNITY CHALLENGE: Between March 15th and December 30th, we’re challenging 100 people to donate $50 (or more!) to help restore the murals.
Mural #1: West Seattle Ferries by Bill Garnet 4707 CALIFORNIA AVE SW (Restored August, 2019)
Mural #2: The Junction by Eric Grohe 4747 CALIFORNIA AVE SW (renovation includes washing and graffiti coating)
Mural #3: Midnight Call by Don Barrie (removed in 2016) 4713 44TH AVE SW (complete rebuild currently in design process with original artist)
Mural #4: Mosquito Boat Landing by Susan Tooke 4554 CALIFORNIA AVE SW (Restored November, 2018)
Mural #5: The First Duwamish Bridge by Robert Dafford 4740 44TH AVE SW (complete renovation)
Mural #6: Morgan Street Market by Bruce Rickett 6501 CALIFORNIA AVE SW 98136 (Restored July, 2018)
Mural #7: Alki in the Twenties by Bruce Rickett (re-created in 2016) 4755 FAUNTLEROY WAY SW (renovation complete parking garage Whittaker Apartments)
Mural #8: Tuesday Bank Day by Alan Wylie 4501 CALIFORNIA AVE SW (renovations includes color wash, washing and graffiti coating currently in renovation process with original artist)
Mural #9: The Hi Yu Parade by Lanny Little 4412 CALIFORNIA AVE SW (renovation includes washing and graffiti coating)
Mural #10: The Old Mud Hole by Mike Svob 4520 44TH AVE SW (complete renovation) graffiti removed May, 2019.
Mural #11: Press Day by Alan Wylie 4727 44TH AVE SW (currently being restored as of August, 2019)
Future Murals – 2019 and beyond.
You can choose to pay via check made payable to the West Seattle Junction Association:
4210 SW Oregon St, Suite A
Seattle WA 98116
or securely via the donate button.
Want to create your own Mural fundraiser? You can! Just click on the Join the Team button.
You may also donate stocks by completing the Donation of Securities WSJA form.
Current donations by cash, check or stock donation:
West Seattle Garden Tour $5,000
Sarah H. and Kathleen J. $5,000
Morgan Community Association and Admiral Neighborhood Association $5,000
Morgan Community Association $1,000
Ivy Court Apartments $1,000
Pegasus Books $200
West Seattle Outdoor Movies cash donations $120
Lyle E. $50
Corliss G. $50
Stephanie & Ralph W. $25
The Junction is a registered 501(c)(3) your donation is tax deductible EIN #91-1403639.
Video and mural pictures by This Is It Video Production and Services
Earl Cruzen and Adah Cruzen Photo by West Seattle Blog