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Former resident paints festival mural

A new mural for DjangoFest was painted by former Langley resident Matt Statz. Statz spent five days working on the mural near the Whidbey Island Center for the Arts building.  - Celeste Erickson / The Record
A new mural for DjangoFest was painted by former Langley resident Matt Statz. Statz spent five days working on the mural near the Whidbey Island Center for the Arts building.
— image credit: Celeste Erickson / The Record

Whidbey Island Center for the Arts has a new staple for DjangoFest this year, a large mural welcoming guests.

The mural was painted by former Langley resident Matt Statz, 25. He completed his work on Saturday, Aug. 10 after working on the piece for five days.

The Center commissioned him to paint the mural due to his earlier work for DjangoFest, which was used as a backdrop during performances.

The mural is based on one of his earlier paintings.

The large work is of Django and his band playing at a jazz club with a smoky atmosphere and hints of stage lighting. Statz used stage paint, water based acrylic paint, house paint, whatever was around, he said.

Statz got his start painting murals through the Whidbey Children’s Theater. He painted many backdrops for their productions in the Porter building. He said he got comfortable working on that scale and his talent grew from there.

The building is owned by the school district and will not be permanent, said Stacie Burgua, executive director at WICA. The center had painted the mural for performances years ago, but this is the first time it has been so dramatic, she said.

“It takes on a whole new scale,” she said.

Statz spent five days painting the mural. He said many people stopped by to show their support.

“The whole thing was wonderful,” he said. “Being able to work outdoors was so much fun with this weather.”

“I’m proud of this piece,” he added. “It isn’t really my normal style, but I think it’s effective for the vibe of DjangoFest.”

DjangoFest will run Sept. 18-22 with tickets ranging from $32-$70.

For more information visit www.wicaonline.com

 

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