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We Live Up Here redo faded murals

The wheat paste technique, used successfully in warmer climates, proved not to be durable enough for a Northern Ontario winter. Both murals started to peel and became discoloured after the long winter. Parts of the murals were torn off altogether.
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Sudbury street artist Andrew Blair used a pressure washer Saturday to remove what was left of a mural the group behind the We Live Up Here photo book had created last summer. The group will create a new mural at the same location with a protective resin to help it survive the winter. Photo by Jonathan Migneault.
The wheat paste technique, used successfully in warmer climates, proved not to be durable enough for a Northern Ontario winter.

Both murals started to peel and became discoloured after the long winter. Parts of the murals were torn off altogether.

“We're using a product that is made for this now,” said Christian Pelletier, one of We Live Up Here's creators. “Whereas last year we were using a product that was supposed to work for this based on the research that we had done.”

The new product is an acrylic resin from California that will seal the murals from the front and back to ensure no humidity touches the paper.
Pelletier and a group of volunteers have already replaced the mural on the Kingsway with a new image of a couple in a canoe. They've added a dash of colour to the mural with a yellow background.

Saturday and Sunday, the group started to tackle the larger mural on Ste. Anne Road, at the intersection with MacKenzie Street.

Volunteers peeled away what paper was left with a variety of tools and a pressure washer.

Pelletier said the plan was to have a primer coat on the wall by the end of the day Sunday.

The new and improved mural, which will keep the eye design – and ad an extra splash of colour – should be completed in a couple of weeks, he said.

Jonathan Migneault

About the Author: Jonathan Migneault

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