By Josh Bollinger
EASTON - Bob Porter is planning an “Icons of the Eastern Shore” mural project for the silos owned by Perdue Farms on Kemp Lane, off Brookletts Avenue, in Easton.
All he needs now is funding.
Porter titled it a “street beautification project.” He owns a property at 125 Kemp Lane, formerly a hatchery and is now known as an art gallery called Le hatchery Galleria, on which the mural will also be featured.
He said he’s been thinking for several years of how to imoprove the looks of the area, which currently he said “may leave a little bit to be desired.”
The mural idea stemmed from a graffiti artist and friend who used to live on the Eastern Shore, moved to San Francisco, Calif., and developmed contacts with other artists.
“Instead of them being midnight cowboys, now they are tagging buildings for commercial establishments,” Porter said. “He came into one of our open houses several months ago. When he saw our silos, he went ballistic. He said, ‘We’ve got to do something with that.’”
Porter is an eighth generation Eastern Shoreman who said at the Easton Town council meeting on Monday, May 16, that he’s partial to evertyhing that makes the Shore special.
The mural, planned for eight of the silos and the north and east walls of the old hatchery building, will feature all those things that makes the Shore unique - from one side picturing the Chesapeake Bay Bridge, through rolling countrysides and farm fields, to blue crabs, herons, osprey, kipjacks, chickens, and finally down to the beach at Ocean City.
“I want somebody to, when they ride down th stree and they see it and they immediately get it,” Porter said.
Porter’s friends, who operate Mission Art 415, have rounded up artists from the Baltimore and Philadelphia region to paint the mural. They’re eyeing mid-September to October as a time frame for the project, weather permitting.
But, the 10,000 square foot project is expected to cost about $75,000, and Porter said he is reaching out to several people in the community for funding assistance.
“We have several very good prospects related to funding, but until we have that really firmed out, I don’t have a project,” Porter said.
Anyone who wishes to help Porter fund the project is invited to call him at 410-310-7544. Corporate sponsorships will also be offered to cover ongoing costs of maintenance, promotion and advertising. Other funding suggestions are welcome, Porter said.
In the meantime, those working on the project have bought a website domain name, www.ShoreIcons.com, which they’re working to set up. A GoFundMe page, which is a popular crowdsourceing website, is also in the works, Porter said.
Porter said his goal is to have “Icons of the Eastern Shore”become a true landmark and attract annual visitors. Porter said Perdue Farms has signed off on the concept and are supporting it.
(http://lehatchery.gallery/icons.htm article scan via Le Hatchery Galleria)