Minnesota Prairie Roots

Writing and photography by Audrey Kletscher Helbling

Faribault’s newest mural reflects love, diversity June 16, 2021

“LOVE FOR ALL” created by Jordyn Brennan. MN Prairie Roots copyrighted photo.

THE POWER OF VISUAL ART can’t be underestimated. It heals. Uplifts. Infuses joy. Creates a sense of peace. Brings people together. And so much more.

The ASL symbol for “v” and the peace symbol. MN Prairie Roots copyrighted photo.

In Faribault, “LOVE FOR ALL,” a just-finished mural designed and painted by Minneapolis artist Jordyn Brennan, shows the positive power of art in a way that reflects my southern Minnesota community. Yet, the mural’s universal theme of love appeals to everyone.

Jordyn Brennan signed her “LOVE FOR ALL” mural. MN Prairie Roots copyrighted photo.

I love this 85-foot by 35-foot mural which sprawls across the side of a building (and next to a city-owned parking lot) at the corner of First Avenue NW and Third Street NW in the heart of downtown Faribault. The City of Faribault commissioned Brennan to create the public art. It will be celebrated this week during Faribault Heritage Days with a ceremony at 3:30 pm Thursday, June 17, at the mural site. Guest speakers include city officials, representatives from the Minnesota State Academies for the Deaf and Blind and Faribault Main Street, and the artist.

The setting sun shines on the northwest corner of the mural. MN Prairie Roots copyrighted photo.

When I say I love this mural, I should explain, right? I love the vivid hues defining this art. To look at “LOVE FOR ALL” simply makes me happy. And who doesn’t need to feel happy after these past difficult 14 months-plus of living in a pandemic?

LOVE in assorted colors and languages. MN Prairie Roots copyrighted photo.

But beyond that basic appreciation, I value the message of an inclusive Faribault. Mine is a diverse community. Diverse in culture and ethnicity. Diverse, too, in that deaf and blind students come here from all over Minnesota to attend the Minnesota State Academies for the Deaf and Blind. Some of their families live here. A global student population also attends Shattuck-St. Mary’s School, an historic private boarding and day school on Faribault’s east side.

The three dots below the L are L in Braille. MN Prairie Roots copyrighted photo.

The artist took those facets of Faribault and incorporated them into her artwork. You’ll see that in the hands communicating love in American Sign Language with the Braille spelling below. The hands are painted in varied skin tones.

Mums, peonies and clematis. MN Prairie Roots copyrighted photo.

The rare Dwarf Trout Lily. MN Prairie Roots copyrighted photo.

Faribault’s noted flowers. MN Prairie Roots copyrighted photo.

And then, above those hands, flowers bloom. Not just any flowers, but mums, peonies, clematis and the Dwarf Trout Lily, all reflective of Faribault’s rich floral history. Read the backstory on that in my initial post about the mural by clicking here.

Painted concrete blocks distance vehicles from the mural. MN Prairie Roots copyrighted photo.

I feel incredibly grateful to live in a community which values art, including outdoor public art. Many historic-themed murals grace our downtown as do murals on the alley-side of The Upper East Side (213 Central Avenue) and the Second Street Pocket Garden.

The letter L in ASL. MN Prairie Roots copyrighted photo.

As a creative and a member of this diverse place I’ve called home for 39 years, I celebrate this newest piece of art. I hope it sparks conversations, creates a strong sense of community and positivity, and reminds all of us that art is powerful. And so is love.

© Copyright 2021 Audrey Kletscher Helbling


14 Responses to “Faribault’s newest mural reflects love, diversity”

  1. Valerie Says:

    This looks like a wonderful mural. I can’t wait to see it.

  2. AWESOME Mural and included sign language and Braille!!! Love it and love a pop of color and a mural that makes you think and ponder too. Thanks so much for sharing – made my day. Happy Day – Enjoy 🙂

  3. This turned out to be just beautiful! Thank you so much for posting the finished mural. Love it all, the message the flowers and your blog about how proud you are of your community. Just awesome!

  4. Jordyn B Says:

    Thank you so much for your wonderful writing! It was such a joy to be in Faribault and I am so thankful to have gotten the opportunity!

    • You are welcome, Jordyn. I appreciate the thought you put into designing this mural, which is so reflective of Faribault. I appreciate your talent as an artist. And I appreciate your positive attitude and spirit. I hope you can continue to use your talents to bless other communities with similar projects. You are incredibly gifted and have brought much joy to my community through your art. Thank you.

  5. Sandra Says:

    Well, that’s a big WOW! Besides the social influence all the murals have, they beautify in the dead of MN winters! I will forward this to the St. Paul powers heading the 112 acre golf course development just down the block that is Maplewood on 3 sides, St. Paul on the 4th. Be interesting how the approval for this idea came to fruition. Had to be more than the mural committee. It is a diversity struggle, no question. Art is a big cure component!

    • Sandra, thanks for appreciating Jordyn’s mural and for adding the bit about beautifying in the dead of MN winters. The color will certainly be welcome. Thank you also for forwarding this to the folks in St. Paul. The Faribault City Council discussed options and solicited ideas in the process of choosing this mural design.

  6. Susan Ready Says:

    What a lovely visual piece with so much meaning and thought that must have gone into preparing and executing it. The vivid hues are soothing and eye-catching. Thanks for sharing!

  7. The mural turned out great, I love the detail and the overall meaning.

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