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The Arts

Brooklyn-Based Artist Paints Massive Mural in Sunset Yards

There’s a new and colorful work of art in Sunset Park.

Award-winning artist Mike Perry of Mike Perry Studios recently completed a massive mural in Sunset Yards, 341 39th Street, which functions as a gateway to the Industry City and the Sunset Park community.

The building — which sits around the corner from Industry’s City six million square feet of retail, workspace, and amenities — features 360 degrees of unobstructed views as well as a one-of-a-kind “food truck hub” directly accessible from the sidewalk.

Anchored now by the mural completed by Perry, a Brooklyn-based artist who grew up in Kansas City, Sunset Yards has transitioned from a former garage into a hub and central meeting point for the community.

Perry, who works on Comedy Central’s “Broad City,” finished the New York City-themed mural in middle of October, he said during a conversation with this paper about the process.

“I think we painted the whole mural in about seven days,” he said. “They had a hard date of launching the building and the whole process of getting the piece off the ground was challenging.” One of the challenges was that the mural couldn’t be started until the walls at the site were ready. We all needed to figure out how to work together to execute the mural in the amount of time that was allotted to the whole team.”

Perry, who studied at the Minneapolis College of Art and Design, said he enjoys the creative problem solving.

“Should you do a mural in eight days? Maybe not,” he said. “Can you do it? You can do anything if you put your mind to it.”
With the help of a talented crew, which included neighborhood artists, he was able to accomplish just that, “and it was fun.”

The result was a colorful and unique portrayal of New York City.

“I like pop. I like energy. I like positivity, so I try to put that into the work,” Perry said. “It’s very colorful. There are lots of different kinds of colorful shapes making up the background. Each of the shapes represents a different kind of space. All of these things merge together and you get this line drawing that just sits on top, that’s got lots of different levels of detail. That’s really easy to see from afar and then you get closer and there’s more detail.”

The design as well as the execution, Perry added, “try to play with the complexities of the city. You look one direction and see one thing. Then, the closer you get to it, the more you discover about that specific thing.”

For Perry and company, the goal was to create something new to beguile workers eating lunch or people passing by.

While, he said, “They eat there every day, over time, like six months in, they look at it and say, ‘Oh, I just saw that. I’ve never seen that before.’ That kind of adventure of discovery is ultimately what it’s like to live in the city.”

Perry was satisfied with the finished result.

“I hope when someone walks by, they feel some sort of positive energy,” he told this paper.

This isn’t the first large mural that Perry and his studio has created. They previously painted a 7,000 square foot rooftop in Greenpoint. He’s also involved in creating animation, sculptures, books, public art installations, monographs, exhibitions, drawings, silkscreens and more.

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