Community invited to celebrate Bellefonte’s first mural with public artist talk!

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Bellefonte, PA — Over the last two years, Downtown Bellefonte Inc. (DBI) has worked with community members to facilitate a mural project in downtown Bellefonte. The project will come to fruition this spring o with the installation of a large-scale mural at 123 S. Allegheny St., Bellefonte, PA 16823.

From May 21 to May 28, the public is encouraged to visit 123 S. Allegheny to watch the muralists, KEY DETAIL, of New York City, install the mural. The public is asked to stay clear of the muralist’s equipment and save their questions for the May 23 Artist Talk event.


On May 23, Matt Maris of Local Historia will join KEY DETAIL at an artist talk event from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. at the Bellefonte Art Museum. The public is encouraged to join us at this free event to learn more about National Air Mail and Bellefonte’s role in that rich history and hear from KEY DETAIL. The mural artists will share more about their careers and answer questions about their work.


“Public art is a wonderful mechanism for storytelling and capturing our history. Celebrating a community’s history and heritage can play an important role in continuing traditions and remembering

legacies. It is exciting to see a mural project that highlights Bellefonte’s role in U.S. transcontinental mail,” states Alexandra Hall, public art consultant with A H Public Spaces, LLC.


Downtown Bellefonte Inc. (DBI) announced an open artist call in July 2023. During that application process, several artists were invited to submit proposal concepts for this mural, and internationally acclaimed artist group KEY DETAIL’s design proposal was selected. In the fall of 2023, DBI received permission from the Historic Architectural Review Board (HARB) and the necessary permits from Bellefonte Borough to install the mural design at 123 S. Allegheny Street.


KEY DETAIL, of New York City, is a husband-wife team. Andrey and Julia Yu-Baba are mural artists who also create smaller studio works. Both artists have been active on the mural art scene for more than 20 years, and they travel the world with their two young boys installing large murals. They have installed murals throughout Europe, Asia, and the United States. Their distinctive style makes their work ideal for story-telling and celebrating community assets.


The Bellefonte mural design celebrates Bellefonte’s history as a key stop along the National Air Mail in the early years of U.S. transcontinental mail. Bellefonte airfields played an important role as a major refueling stop between New York and Chicago. Mail was flown for the first time from Bellefonte on December 18, 1918, and pilots flew an assortment of planes, including de Havilland DH-4s and Curtiss JN-4H “Jennies.”


From May 13 to May 28, there will be closures along Perry Lane to ensure the safety of the workers doing the wall preparation work and the artists during the mural installation.


The mural will be formally dedicated to Bellefonte in a public ceremony on June 28,  at the mural unveiling block party, held during Friday in the ‘Fonte.


“We are excited to finally unveil this beautiful piece of public art in Bellefonte,” said Kathleen Ammon, Community and Programming Manager of Downtown Bellefonte Inc. “Public art plays a vital role in cultivating community involvement, encouraging economic development, and boosting tourism. Our hope is that this mural will represent the distinctive essence of our town and inspire visitors to explore the many attractions that Bellefonte has to offer.”


This 1,000-square-foot mural will attract visitors, locals, and tourists to Bellefonte, and DBI hopes that this project will be a catalyst for more investment in the arts. Funding for this project was designated through a grant from The PA Wilds Center for Entrepreneurship.