Edwards Metro District commissions young artist Hannah Litt to paint mural to cover up vandalism

Sometimes positive reinforcement works better than negative reinforcement, and that’s what the Edwards Metro District hopes to accomplish with a new mural on the Spur Road Bridge.

Painted by local young artist Hannah Litt, the mural covers up vandalism and came to life thanks to the help of other local youth while providing a chance to share their talents and creativity with the community.

“I love the idea of working with youth in our community and taking their creativity to help solve problems,” said Beth Reilly, president of the Edwards Metro District board.

Reilly also works with The Eagle River Youth Coalition, Mountain Youth and the Communities That Care board. She threw out the idea to engage youth in the public art project to other Communities That Care board members.

“They just ran with it,” Reilly said.

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The organizations connected artist Hannah Litt, who also worked for Mountain Youth, with the metro district. Litt is majoring in art education at Miami University in Ohio, though her classes are completely remote this semester. But living at home gave her the opportunity to plan and complete the mural. She worked with the metro district on concepts, ideas and inspirations.

“I was inspired by life in the small town of Edwards,” Litt said.

They loved the idea, and wanted to incorporate mountains. For Litt, that proved to be a welcome challenge. She mostly likes working in realism and sculpture, but for painting the mural, she took a more minimalist style.

That allowed her to engage community members to help her paint. On Saturday, Sept. 12, she spent the morning sketching out the design and blocking out shapes for volunteers to paint. Volunteers showed up around noon, and within an hour and a half, the mural was finished.

Litt is talking with the towns of Edwards and Eagle about painting more murals.

“It was really cool to see the blank wall at the beginning, and at the very end step back and look at it and know that it was a community effort and not just to cover up graffiti. It was actually a really fun day,” she said. “Going forward, it’s going to be a good way to get the community happy instead of seeing all the graffiti under there. I’m just excited to share what I love doing, which is art, with my community.”

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