The Roots of Vision by Tina Westerkamp

Mt. Adams Pioneers by Tina Westerkamp

Located at 1136 St. Gregory St. in the hilltop neighborhood of Mount Adams, The Roots of Vision by Tina Westerkamp honors the people who shaped this historic Cincinnati neighborhood’s early development.

The mixed media mural is located on the side of a building, making it difficult to look at the whole thing head-on. Unlike most ArtWorks murals, this one isn’t a rectangle, and it doesn’t take up the entire wall, instead meandering across the length of it:

Mt. Adams Pioneers by Tina Westerkamp

Back in the 1790s, Ida Martin was the first European inhabitant of the neighborhood. Legend has it that she lived inside a hollowed out sycamore tree, fancifully represented here:

Mt. Adams Pioneers by Tina Westerkamp

The base of the mural is a mosaic that transitions from Ida’s tree roots to waves as it connects the focal points of the mural:

Mt. Adams Pioneers by Tina Westerkamp

On the left, Archibishop John Purcell, who built nearby Immaculata Church and started the annual procession and prayer up the steps on Good Friday. On the right, Ormsby MacKnight Mitchell, who built an observatory in the neighborhood:

Mt. Adams Pioneers by Tina Westerkamp

Maria Longworth who, in 1880, founded the legendary Rookwood Pottery [artist Tina Westerkamp painted The Migration of Tradition on the side of the company’s current headquarters in nearby Over-the-Rhine]:

Mt. Adams Pioneers by Tina Westerkamp

Wealthy early landowner Nicholas Longworth, Maria’s grandfather:

Mt. Adams Pioneers by Tina Westerkamp

Nearby, these little elements have been embedded into a retaining wall. I’ve heard that this was part of Westerkamp’s project but can’t find anything online about this. Anyone know? It’s a great series of surprises for pedestrians in this dense, walkable neighborhood:

Mt. Adams Pioneers by Tina Westerkamp

Mt. Adams Pioneers by Tina Westerkamp

Tina Westerkamp has painted other ArtWorks mural in the Cincinnati area, including The Migration of Tradition in Over-the-Rhine, Once Upon the River in the convention center downtown and The Divine Proportion of All Things across the river in Covington, KY.

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