In date of October 27th 1999, M.U.R.I.R.S. became officially a non-profit corporation that aims to promote and enhance the built environment by producing murals that favor a social, artistic, historical and cultural communion.
The project was initiated in 1995 by Serge Malenfant and grew with time thanks to his patience, determination and rigor. Numerous years of artistic research and documentation where required to mature the project, raise public awareness of the feasibility and benefits the project and gather partners and artists to build a solid foundation for M.U.R.I.R.S. (Murales Urbaines à Revitalisation d’Immeubles et de Réconciliation Sociale).
The project consisted to create thematic exterior murals to animate downtown Sherbrooke. In 2002, the city’s bicentennial anniversary happened to be the perfect opportunity to launch the project and complete the first mural.
The project intends to revitalize exterior disused facades to improve the urban landscape. The long-term goal was to create a tour of the frescoes that would enlighten and animate the streets while valuing the character of places by highlighting their history, heritage and culture. The murals stand to educate citizens of their origins and history. The artistic role of the frescoes is also to awaken to the passerby as well as the artist to a new vision of the urban decor at the pedestrian scale. The aesthetic interventions soften the hard concrete-brick-asphalt context.
Through mural art, the project illustrates the rich historical and cultural background of Sherbrooke up until today. The scenic canvases around the city merge glimpses of precedent generation’s story to the everyday life. The walls speak to the city about the city and will continue telling and recording stories through time. The project also addresses touristic interest, therefore offering economic benefits as well as artistic and community bonding.
Altogether, the murals form an outdoor gallery offering a journey about the history and culture of Sherbrooke. The Bicentennial was the springboard for the project, but the objective is to continue activities well after 2002 to inspire and offer our services and expertise to other regions. By demonstrating all the possibilities of the mural as a mean of promotion and visibility as well as an indicator well-doing of the municipality Sherbrooke wishes to inspire other communities around the province and elsewhere
The growth of the project relies on the expertise developed by M.U.R.I.R.S. over more than ten years of experience offering high quality murals. We offer our services in animation, project support and personalized creations to municipalities, recreational and community organism, pedagogical institutions and private companies. These collaborations offered by M.U.R.I.R.S. are aimed at a local and touristic market to enhanced socio-cultural life or reinforce a creative image.
The History of Mural Art
Mural art is the most ancient of all art forms. It is over 14,000 years old. Murals can be found from prehistoric cave walls and ceilings to the world’s greatest cathedrals. From the era of the Pharaohs to the Italian Renaissance, from the Mexican mural movement to the New Deal, murals are decorative and narrative elements common to all cultures.
Today, muralists are working hard to reintroduce mural narratives to the range of modern art. The trompe l’œil technique used by M.U.R.I.R.S. draws on illusion as a convincing force to spark public appreciation of this form of artwork. The public’s approval significantly contributes to the restoration of murals’ greatness.
Sherbrooke is a small chapter in the great book of mural art. This art form has left its mark on the city, despite its relative youth. Following are a few examples: