HAPA UNVEILS ‘BE YOU’ MURAL IN HATTIESBURG AVENUESOctober 11, 2023
HATTIESBURG, MS (Oct. 11, 2023) – Hattiesburg Alliance for Public Art has joined forces with a local clothing boutique UAL Apparel Liquidators to unveil the city’s newest mural. Located in the Hattiesburg Avenues, the fashion-forward design by Miami artist Ivan Roque adds a fashionable flair to the district.
Titled ‘Be You,’ the art piece stands at 13 feet high and spans 64 feet in width. It’s the sixth large-scale mural added in the Hattiesburg Avenues and the city’s 47th mural overall. The Avenues is a thriving area for local commerce and entertainment along Hardy Street, offering a vibrant quality of life for residents and visitors. To fit the location, Roque’s art incorporates recognizable fashion elements with a bold and modern approach.
“I wanted to take a different approach from what I usually create and feature individuals of various walks of life looking fabulous and capturing their inner essence through fashion,” said Roque. “Through fashion, we can truly be ourselves and explore all of our desires while allowing the world to see a glimpse into our beings.”
Following a national call for artists seeking original design concepts for the project earlier this summer, Roque’s entry was selected by an independent review panel. This is his second mural in Hattiesburg, with the Longleaf Trace tunnel mural ‘Together as One’ being his first. Roque also assisted with the ‘We are the Future’ mural located near Hawkins Elementary School.
“Collaborating with a local cornerstone like UAL amplifies the sense of community we cherish,” said VisitHATTIESBURG executive director Marlo Dorsey. “The eclectic blend of shops, dining options, and vibrant art offerings adds to our local quality of place and enhances our city’s appeal as a must-visit destination in the Gulf South.”
UAL Apparel Liquidators has had a storefront in the Hattiesburg Avenues sine 1980. Beginning as a small family-owned business in Hattiesburg, the niche boutique offers deep discounts on a unique variety of designer apparel and accessories for men and women. The brand, which now has nine locations across the southern U.S., wanted the exterior wall of their building to match the creative vibe found inside their store.
“Inspired by our love for fashion, we wanted to elevate this space in a way that not only our customers, but the community at large could enjoy for years to come,” said the UAL team. “Working with HAPA on this project has been the perfect opportunity to share our inspiration and love with Hattiesburg.”
Since 2020, Hattiesburg’s public art has grown significantly throughout the city, both in murals and utility boxes. Hattiesburg has been listed as an emerging public arts destination by numerous publications and was featured in Travel and Leisure as a top public art city in 2022.
To learn more about HAPA or for a map of existing public art in Hattiesburg, visit HAPA’s Facebook and Instagram pages or hburgart.com.
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A program of VisitHATTIESBURG, HAPA began in 2014 through the leadership of community members and generous donors passionate about publicly sharing art and making it accessible to all. HAPA continues to purchase and place art throughout the city – in parks, neighborhoods, public buildings, and businesses – while also raising awareness for works of art already in the area. The organization is partially funded by VisitHATTIESBURG, Mississippi Arts Commission grants, the City of Hattiesburg, and other local organizations and individuals who believe in the importance of public art.