In addition to the mural named “Inspiration” on Heister Street, local artist Michael Pilato said he wants to expand his artwork to the surrounding sidewalk, building and windows in a campaign called “Inspiration Way.”
The campaign is aimed to break up the sidewalk lining the mural and in front of the Student Bookstore and to add bricks inscribed with names. Pilato also said he wants to add the Interfraternity Council/Panhellenic Dance Marathon, Penn State Blue Band and agriculture to the mural, which is going to expand onto bricks surrounding the mural, as well as the three windows to the left of it.
In these three spots, Pilato wants to add people at Penn State who have helped with issues concerning sexual abuse since last November.
“I want to add more additions with more inspiration and inspirational people,” Pilato said. “Right now, it is important to showcase those people.”
Mayor Elizabeth Goreham said she thinks that “Inspiration” tells an ongoing story of State College, and that it is good to keep it up-to-date. Goreham also said that Pilato is an inspiration in this mural with his heartfelt connections.
“He’s a part of State College, and State College is a part of him,” she said. “He’s a very talented artist.”
Pilato is also asking students who they think should be on the mural.
Though Tess Bloom (junior-biology) didn’t speak with Pilato, she said Pilato should add people who have made a positive influence on Penn State — such as people who have helped spread awareness about sex abuse and people involved in THON.
Bloom said that adding people who have helped with sexual abuse awareness would show support to those affected by sexual abuse.
Another student, Chevy Martin (senior--agricultural business), stopped to look at the mural as Pilato was working on it Wednesday. He said that he’s never really stopped to look at the mural before, but thinks additions would be positive to the mural.
“It’s a good idea to add other parts of Penn State University’s heritage,” he said.
He also said that adding the Nittany Lion mascot would be a good addition to the mural.
Rachel Harvey (sophomore-English and Spanish) said that adding a more “student-personal vibe” would allow students to relate more to the mural.
Harvey, who is a second-year silk in the Blue Band, said that she supports adding the Blue Band to the mural because of their positive influence on campus. She also said that the mural is already an inspiration, but added that students would relate more to campus life.
“The mural should show the average kids that do good for this university,” she said.