Just like in a third of the US, this week Oregon’s governor issued a statewide Stay-at-Home order to flatten the Corona virus pandemic curve. Since travel beyond getting the essentials is now strongly discouraged, I chose to exercise my Travel-at-Home option and walk the downtown core, stepping through the 30+ Corvallis Urban Art installations.

Environmental/Nature Urban Art

Pachamama, urban art

Pachamama by Eileen Hinkle

Urban Art: Aguante Pachamama (translation – Stay Strong Mother Earth)

Pachamama is the goddess that gives us all that we need for sustenance and enjoyment. However, we mortals aren’t treating her with the respect she deserves. Check out the inclusion of the 2017 eclipse in totality, a recurring image on many other murals in town.

Property Sponsor: Riverview Mongolian Grill
Financial Sponsor: Gary Feuerstein

King Salmon

King Salmon by Esteban Camacho Steffensen

Urban Art: King Salmon

The official state fish surrounding an entrance to a Benton County office building.

Property Sponsor: Benton County
Financial Sponsor: Benton County
Coordinator: Anne Schuster

Oh Deer, urban art

Oh Deer by Sebastian “Vela” Velazquez

Urban Art: Oh Deer by Sebastian “Vela” Velazquez

One of the largest and most colorful, this mural is a typical Pacific Northwest scene. The image holds deer, waterfalls, salmon, a beaver damn, all with Mary’s Peak rising in the background.

Property Sponsor: Reynolds Law Firm
Financial Sponsor: Reynolds Law Firm & Corvallis Fall Festival
Coordinator: Jennifer Moreland, Corvallis Mural Project

Walking Lightly in Time

Walking Lightly in Time by Esteban Camacho Steffensen

Walking Lightly in Time

The mural was painted by Corvallis youth, under the direction of muralist Esteban Steffensen. The purpose of the sponsors is to bring attention to the need for local climate action immediately.

Property Sponsor: D’s Market
Financial Sponsor: Sierra Club & YouCAN Corvallis

Back Alley Art

Storm Troopers

Storm Troopers by Unknown

Urban Art: Storm Troopers by Unknown

Like all towns I suppose, Corvallis has its share of “taggers” marking alley walls with ribbons of spray paint. But here they also can be whimsical.

Property Sponsor: Unknown
Financial Sponsor: Unkownn

Crow in Totality, urban art

Crow in Totality by Sebastian “Vela” Velazquez

Urban Art: Crow in Totality

Indigenous cultures believe the Crow had the power of speech and was considered to be the wisest of birds. As do many murals in town, this also features the total solar eclipse in August 2017.

Property Sponsor: American Dream Pizza, Crowbar
Financial Sponsor: Scott & Angela McFarland
Coordinator: Jennifer Moreland, Corvallis Mural Project

Mountain Sunset, urban art

Mountain Sunset by Sage Zaharodni

Urban Art: Mountain Sunset

This mural depicts an old soul that embodies the beauty of the natural world. Themes of nature, adventure, and earth stewardship shine in this piece of art.

Property Sponsor: Hugh & Elizabeth White
Financial Sponsor: Running Princess Apparel
Coordinator: Jennifer Moreland, Corvallis Mural Project

Social/Political Urban Art

We Are All In This Together, urban art

We Are All In This Together by Courtney Marchesi, Marnie Ernst Zoa

Urban Art: We Are All In This Together

A very apropos thought from this art piece for these global pandemic times.

Property Sponsor: Hugh & Elizabeth White
Coordinator: Marnie Ernst Zoa

Friendship, Love, Truth, urban art

Friendship, Love, Truth by Alice Marshall

Urban Art: Friendship, Love, Truth

Located behind the Odd Fellows Hall, this is a “Where’s Waldo” interactive art piece. Ten symbols have been hidden within the mural. One of these IOOF symbols, the Three Arrows, represents the Odd Fellows’ central values of friendship, love, and truth. Can you spot some others?

Property Sponsor: Independent Order of Odd Fellows (IOOF)
Financial Sponsor: Independent Order of Odd Fellows (IOOF)
Coordinator: Jennifer Moreland, Corvallis Mural Project

Love Has No Gender, urban art

Love Has No Gender by Mackenzie Burnett, Melody Wooth, Lia Chung, Leela Ayres, Simon Lewis

Urban Art: Love Has No Gender

Tucked away in a seldom traveled spot, this hidden location symbolizes the unseen aspect of many LBGTQ relationships.

Property Sponsor: Unknown
Financial Sponsor: Unknown

Scenes of Taiwan and Tibet, urban art

Scenes of Taiwan and Tibet by Chao Tsung-song

Urban Art: Scenes of Taiwan and Tibet

Detail from a huge mural painted on a dream that never came to fruition. Originally the building was planned to be a meeting place for Asian students, but the Chinese government sent a protest letter to our government about the political nature of this mural – Chinese troops burning and beating local Tibetans under peaceful prayer flags. The meeting hall never opened.

Property Sponsor: Unknown

Advertising Urban Art

Maya, urban art

Maya by Skye Walker

Urban Art: Maya

An all spray paint, ocean-themed, Mother Nature/goddess mural for an upscale Cantina. The goddess Maya exudes extraordinary power and wisdom.

Property Sponsor: Water Street Market
Financial Sponsor: Taco Vino
Coordinator: Morris Walker

Title Unknown, urban art

Title Unknown

Urban Art: Title Unknown

Advertising on a local family owned plumbing business showroom.

Property Sponsor: Albin’s Plumbing
Financial Sponsor: Albin’s Plumbing

Title Unknown, urban art

Title Unknown (4:19:36?)

Urban Art: Title Unknown

In this Bosch-inspired advertising for a local cannabis dispensary, a clock anticipates the arrival of 4:20. Since the store borders Oregon State University, a nod is given to the school’s mascot as it whispers Einstein’s trademark formula into his ear.

Property Sponsor: Mr. Nice Guy
Financial Sponsor: Mr. Nice Guy

When You Go:

Tap the “View the Map” button in the lower right corner to follow an interactive Google map

Written and Photographed by: Steve Smith

steve smith pic Steve inherited the wanderlust and has always needed to see what’s around the next corner. In his college years he enjoyed many memorable (and cheap) forays into Mexico sleeping under the stars, but today that’s all changed. Since 2006 he’s contributed stories and photographs to In The Know Traveler, and in 2014 he assumed an editor role with the same. Published both in digital and print formats, his international assignments have taken him to the Middle East, Asia, North/Latin/South America, Europe, and the Caribbean. Follow his Facebook page Steve’s Roadtrippin’ Travels that spotlights both his photography and how his road travels intersect with digital storytelling using dynamic space-age mapping technology.

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