Public Mural Program

The Deerfield Fine Arts Commission has expanded its public mural program and installed two new murals by Deerfield High School students Bradley Epstein and Annika Sornson. The murals are on the east wall of the AT&T building in the Village Center.

Working with the Fine Arts Commission, Deerfield High School Art Teacher Mike Moran held a mural contest and used it as a way to teach students about public art. Out of 23 finalists, seven finalists presented their mural concepts to the Fine Arts Commission. 

The murals will be on display for one year and will be replaced by other student art. AT&T donated the use of their walls.

"Child on Turtle"

Annika Sornson, Deerfield High School

annika sornson

Artist's Statement:

What inspired you to create what you did? 

When I first learned of the Deerfield Mural project, my initial idea was to create art that was bright, colorful, and playful. Over winter break, I visited the Garfield Park Conservatory in Chicago with my family. In the dead of winter, the tropical air and lush setting was very refreshing and inspiring.  The main room of the conservatory had a large pond surrounded by a wide variety of bright green ferns, palm trees, and other tropical plants. The pond housed a large number of orange, yellow, white, and red patterned Koi fish. I loved the contrast between the colors of the fish and the plants.  I decided to include one of the animals that fascinates me the most, the African Spurred Tortoise, also known as the Sulcata Tortoise.  It is the third largest species of tortoise in the world, and can grow up to 31 inches long and can weigh up to 231 pounds. Due to its very friendly temperament, I imagined the Sulcata Tortoise to be a good companion for a young boy on an adventure.

Explain any symbolism in your work? 

As a child, I loved spending time outside, especially climbing trees and being camouflaged in the leaves. Everything seemed so much larger than myself and I loved the adventure I experienced.  I wanted to recreate that feeling when nature was so grand and I felt so small.  The tortoise is larger than its size in real life in this setting because I think young children can relate to the boy’s perspective.

"Face with Sunglasses"

Bradley Epstein, Deerfield High School

Epstein Mural

Artist's Statement:

What inspired you to create what you did?

With my artwork, I wanted to provide the audience with a realistic view of Deerfield from another person's perspective. I wanted to make a mural that the audience could really interact with and one that would make them think, not just something pretty to look at.

Explain any symbolism in your work?

The view of the man in the mural, represents the theory of "Big Brother," and how someone is always watching. This makes people aware, causing them to behave positively. Also, it makes people think twice about their actions, even when they are not in front of the mural.

Any other insight that would enhance our understanding of your work.

When making this piece, I wanted it to be very specific to its surroundings. In doing so, I went and took photos of what the man would see from inside the wall. Also, I wanted to create a piece that included multiple medias, photography and graphic design.