Public art elevated to a new level with 2 skywalk murals in downtown Milwaukee

NOW: Public art elevated to a new level with 2 skywalk murals in downtown Milwaukee

MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- A welcomed pop of color is on hand at two downtown Milwaukee skywalks this winter.

In partnership with The Avenue and the ASQ Center, Milwaukee Downtown, BID #21 has commissioned two new murals inside the 2nd Street and Plankinton Avenue skywalks.

Milwaukee-native and Los Angeles-based artist Alex Couto of The Couto Brothers will transform the 2nd Street skywalk bridge (connecting the Plankinton Arcade and 3rd Street Market Hall), while Milwaukee-based artist Dave Watkins will make over the Plankinton Avenue skywalk bridge (connecting the Plankinton Arcade and ASQ Center).

Each mural will span the entire length of the skywalk, ranging between 75 ft. to 100 ft. in width and 10 ft. to 12 ft. in height.

Work on the murals started on Monday, Jan. 24 and will be completed over the next two weeks.

“Downtown Milwaukee’s 1.75-mile skywalk system is a convenient amenity, especially during winter months,” said Beth Weirick, CEO of Milwaukee Downtown, BID #21. “Activating these vital corridors with public art is an important step in enhancing their vibrancy and further strengthening connectivity to The Avenue and the recently-opened 3rd Street Market Hall.”

In 2019, the ownership of 310W, Time Equities Inc., commissioned a mural inside the 310W skywalk, “mutopia 2,” by German artist Claudia Chaseling.

The skywalk mural program follows 310W’s precedent-setting mural and will create a collection of public art in downtown Milwaukee’s publicly accessible skywalks.

The skywalk mural project is funded by Hempel Companies, who owns and manages The Avenue and ASQ Center, and Milwaukee Downtown, BID #21.

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