The City of Oakland Park launched a ‘Call to Artists’ regarding a mural project at the Oakland Park Fire Rescue Station #87. I was very excited when I was awarded the project! I was curious to learn about firefighters and my goal was to create a design that was a true representation of the firefighters’ world.
On October 8, 2014 I met with the Chief Donald Widing at the Fire Station #87 to discuss about the mural. He said that the mural should depict the activities at the Fire Station. He suggested meeting with firefighters at stations #87 and #9 to learn more about their activities and listen to their stories.
Meeting the firefighters was an enjoyment: they were very open to help. They provided pictures with their activities and suggested ideas for the mural, like an eagle carrying the Firefighters’ Logo. In order to construct the design for the mural and depict scenes with great detail, I had to take pictures of the firefighters wearing uniforms, masks, and helmets. I wanted to make sure that the equipment depicted in the mural was accurate and I had to consult the firefighters about this. This helped me gain enough information to come up with a concept design.
The mural depicts scenes of the firefighters’ activities at the station and on call; the American flag and the eagle holding the firefighters’s logo are symbolic of their patriotism and courage. Firefighters’ activities like fighting a fire or helping out with a car crash, invite the viewer to realize that firefighters are valuable to our communities. The lower segment of the mural depicts a firefighter teaching children about STOP, DROP and ROLL fire safety technique.
The mural is the focal point for the station and will help many visitors to learn about the firefighters and the lives that they lead. Its purpose is to beautify, give identity to the fire station, and to educate the children that will visit. After viewing the mural, the chief, Donald Widing says, children will be invited to create their own drawings based on what they learned and have these drawings exhibited at the station on the opposite wall from the mural.
This project was a great experience for me, and I am very thankful for being chosen to work on it. Many thanks to Kathleen Margoles – Special Projects Coordinator at the City of Oakland Park, Donald Widing – Chief of Fire Rescue, Greg Lewis – Support Service Coordinator, and all the firefighters at Stations #87 and #9, Oakland Park, Florida!!!
For more information, go to www.muralsbygeorgeta.com
About the artist
Georgeta Fondos is an award-winning professional artist known for custom murals and textile installations. Her versatility is the result of an extensive academic training in drawing, painting, textiles, and art history in Europe (Moldova, Romania, and Greece) and United States. She holds a Bachelors in Fine Arts with specialization in Textile Arts (Moldova), and a Master’s in Fine Arts Degree from Florida Atlantic University. She resides in South Florida and enjoys working on large-scale murals and experimental textile installations, and teaching college students.