Public Art adds pop of color to benches and utility boxes at NoMi’s Griffing Park

Local artist and once North Miami resident, Cavan Koebel’s colorful brushstrokes now adorn the utility boxes, benches, and more at Griffing Park on NE 123 St. and West Dixie Hwy., part of the Community Redevelopment Agency’s Art in Public Places Program.

Helmed by newly named Public Arts Program Manager Michelle McKoy, this project is one of many coming to the City. Murals and public art have been popping up around North Miami for quite some time and Artburst Miami has covered a couple of those projects. Click here to read about the Liberty Gardens mural and click here to read about the public art at the Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA).

“I’m looking forward to working with innovative artists and implementing public art that reflects the diversity of North Miami. Infusing energy on multiple levels is what art does, I’m fortunate for the opportunity to navigate this terrain using expressive art modalities,” said McKoy.

For the latest project at Griffing Park, artist Cavan Koebel (a.k.a Raw.Sol) had to work quickly, having been alerted about the Call for Artists just a week before the deadline.

“My Dad who is a realtor in North Miami and a fellow artist I know that does work with juvenile detention centers both sent me the information, saying they immediately thought of me and encouraged me to apply,” said Koebel.

He quickly checked out the Call to Artists and saw what they were looking for and trying to have done. He let the idea simmer in his head to get the juices flowing. He automatically knew the artwork had to be fun, uplifting and something that celebrated the local environment.

“I incorporated Caribbean influences like native plants and animals to celebrate the natural environment of South FL when creating the designs,” said Koebel.

He created the mock-up in about two to three days with the final designs taking about four days. The designs then were presented for approval and he got to work. His colorful work was unveiled at Griffing Park on April 30.

In total, Koebel’s work is featured on four concrete benches, six utility boxes, one single-story concrete pavilion and two smaller single-story utility buildings.

This project is not Koebel’s first for North Miami, his murals grace the Mary’s Lb. pet food store on West Dixie Highway and on one of the walls of the Taco Bell on NE 125 St.


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