Every time Indigo Gaydusek ’19 drives down Frederick Avenue, she sees her very large artwork on the side of a brick building at 13th and Frederick. Gaydusek, who graduated with a studio art – painting degree with minors in printmaking and sculpture last May, was commissioned by Missouri Western’s Marketing and Communications Office to paint Griffon wings on the side of Kelly’s Pub, owned by Shawn and Kathy Kelly. She completed the work this past summer.
“That was such a blessing to be able to jump right in with the mural as soon as I graduated,” she said.
The mural, approximately, 15′ wide x 11′ high, features Missouri Western’s clock tower and a pair of wings. Jomel Nichols, chief marketing officer, said the wings make an outstanding photo opportunity for students and the community.
She said the University’s new tagline, “Together we succeed,” conveys that Missouri Western faculty and staff are right there with the students as they work toward their degrees and meet their goals. “The wings seem to say, ‘we’ve got your back. Together we fly!’”
Last semester, when Nichols approached Kathy Liao, assistant professor of art, about the wings mural, Liao immediately suggested Gaydusek for the project.
“I loved the wings, but I felt like it needed the clock tower as a unifying concept, since it is in the center of campus,” said Gaydusek, who designed the mural.
But the giant wings weren’t Gaydusek’s last large public art project. She also helped Liao on a mural on a Southside St. Joseph building (see “Missouri Western paints up the Southside, p. 6). Gaydusek’s role in that mural was painting the woman on the bike, because “no one else wanted to tackle it.” She also worked on the “238” sign.
“Kathy Liao was really influential to me and helped me become more professional,” Gaydusek said. “She really wanted us to succeed, and she helped me stretch my abilities.”
Gaydusek said she really enjoyed painting the wings on Kelly’s and she learned a lot as she worked out the challenges of painting on a large, brick wall. But visiting with people as they came by to check out her work made for a really great experience.
“I really enjoy that my murals bring people together.”
The alumna artist currently lives in St. Joseph, ministering to college students with the Navigators and working at Starbucks part-time. Someday, she hopes to create more public art for St. Joseph. Her dad is ready; he already has a hashtag for her – #paintthesaint.