Who Put That There?

By
0 Flares Facebook 0 Twitter 0 Google+ 0 Reddit 0 Pin It Share 0 Email -- Filament.io Made with Flare More Info'> 0 Flares ×

by Kristin Weinkauf

Photo by Kristin Weinkauf.  Joe DiGuiseppi at one "window" of his new mural.

JOE DIGUISEPPI HAS LEFT A TRAIL ALL OVER DANBURY. In 2006, he painted the fishscape mural in Kennedy Park, in 2009 he did a hidden mural on the back of Main Street’s Union Savings Building, he painted the White Street parking area for Escape to the Arts in 2008 and most recently spruced up the side of the Omaha Beef building.

DiGuiseppi’s newest mural, a cityscape painted on the cemented windows of the Omaha building, plays with perspective, light and alludes to a hopping urban scene.

“I sat in front of the Cultural Commission and I looked them all dead in the eye and said ‘Let’s paint the town,'” DiGuiseppi said.

So he did.

by Kristin Weinkauf



Photo by Kristin Weinkauf.  Joe DiGuiseppi at one "window" of his new mural.   JOE DIGUISEPPI HAS LEFT A TRAIL ALL OVER DANBURY.  In 2006, he painted the fishscape mural in Kennedy Park, in 2009 he did a hidden mural on the back of Main Street’s Union Savings Building, he painted the White Street parking area for Escape to the Arts in 2008 and most recently spruced up the side of the Omaha Beef building.  

DiGuiseppi’s newest piece, “Crosby St. Extension”, is a cityscape painted on the cemented windows of the Omaha building. The mural plays with perspective and light and alludes to a hopping urban scene. 

“I wanted to capture in imagery what Danbury has,” said DiGuiseppi at the site of his new piece.  “It also seals in the renovation of the block.”

The Omaha building, located on the corners of Maple Avenue, Crosby Street and Lee Hartell Drive, has been empty and dilapidated since Sherman Williams closed a few years ago.  The building now houses a brand new Papa John’s Pizza and will be the new home for the dance and arts studio A Common Ground.

DiGuiseppi’s current project took three weeks from start to finish.  

“I would show up at eight in the morning and by two o’clock the sun would start to bake us,” he said.  However, “summer is the best time to do a mural,” he added.  

Joe DiGuiseppi is just another local who is making it as a working and living artist.  He works at Escape to the Arts and is enrolled in Southern Connecticut State University’s graduate program for art education.  He helps his mom out and lives with her in Newtown, though he once called downtown Danbury home.  

“I’m just really happy someone is doing something with this town,” said Joe.  

The passion that exudes from Mr. DiGuiseppi is contagious.  He can not keep his eyes off of his most recently completed piece of work.  “The beauty is in the chaos,” he said while leaning on a nearby telephone pole.{vsig}dig{/vsig}{vsig_c}0|escape.gif|Image courtesy of JoeDiGspi.com.  The Escape to the Arts Mural.|{/vsig_c}
{vsig_c}0|threeworld-page2.gif|Image courtesy of JoeDiGspi.com.   “Three Worlds” in Kennedy Park.|{/vsig_c}
{vsig_c}0|Union.gif|Image courtesy of JoeDiGspi.com. The mural behind Union Savings.|t{/vsig_c}

BUT how does someone get started in the beautification of downtown Danbury?  

“I sat in front of the Cultural Commission and I looked them all dead in the eye and said ‘Let’s paint the town.’”  So he did.  

DiGuiseppi used Valspar’s exterior latex paint and the “magic brush with the perfect point for all of the people” to complete his work.  This type of paint tends to dry very fast, so to combat that challenge, Joe used a technique called dry brushing, which, like it sounds, employs a mostly dry paintbrush.  That created a scratchy look that blended into the walls seamlessly.  The paint also claims that it is light safe for 200 years.  As the artist DiGuiseppi  gives a  one-year guarantee if any scratches or vandalism occurs on his pieces.  Joe hopes his murals last for at least 25 years.

This last piece was finished on August 22 and dedicated on August 27. DiGuiseppi says that he is satisfied as an artist and has been getting really good feedback from the community.  In fact, as our interview was wrapping up, a couple of pedestrians took the time to stop and thank him for a job well done.    

View more of DiGuiseppi’s work at JoeDigSpi.com.

by & filed under Arts & Music, Local.