Several Upstate artists are busy at work on Stone Avenue in Greenville, painting three different murals as part of the Stone Mural Project. It’s part of the fifth annual community project to help decorate the buildings there.

“The plan was always to have a dozen murals on Stone Avenue up and down in either direction so our city and neighborhood and commuters that go through this SC DOT road can have art,” said Stephanie Burnette, one of the co-chairs of the project.

Today over 100 5th graders from Stone Academy will help complete one of the murals on Watson Finance on Stone Ave. These students worked with artists Eli Blasko and Russell Bannan of Bannan Blasko LLC, to create the design.

“It’s a celebration of the centennial Stone Academy first and foremost, and there are a lot of things the students came up with that are subtle in the design, such as the solar eclipse and life cycle of a dandelion,” explains Russell Bannan. “There’s a really hidden 100 in the back of the mural…hexagons that refer to the mascot of Stone Academy.”

Under the direction of Bannan and Blasko, Furman students are also helping to paint the mural as part of a Maymester public art class. They will be paired with the Stone Avenue children in shifts to complete the mural.

Meanwhile, there are 2 other murals going up on Stone Avenue. One, located on the outside wall of The Bohemian, is by Annie Koelle. The design is in honor of the Gridley Club in Greenville that is reaching its 100th anniversary in 2019.

The other is on the side of the Bombshell Lounge, designed and painted by Artisphere’s 2018 Emerging Artist Michelle Jardines. The mural is in honor of Mike Mecklinburg, an Uber driver who died in Greenville last year. “It’s very reminiscent of the sky and clouds Mike used to paint as a watercolors,” Burnette said.