A significant new mural is currently coming to life on the city’s East Side. The public work of art was designed by Polish born artist Otecki (Wojciech Kołacz – 1984).
The work of art is located at 617 Fillmore Avenue (working title), directly across the street from Torn Space Theater (housed in the Adam Mickiewicz Library and Dramatic Circle), which also recently underwent a dramatic transformation (see here). This same Broadway-Fillmore neighborhood is within viewing distance of the iconic Central Terminal – the landmark was recently awarded $5 million in funding.
The mural project is part of the latest public art installation effort by the Albright-Knox (AK). This particular work paired Poland–based artist Otecki (illustrator, printmaker, painter, and muralist) with a neighborhood that is steeped in Polish heritage. According to the AK, “Buffalo is home to the second largest Polish population in the United States.”
Otecki (based in Wrocław, Poland), whose work is influenced by Cubism, non-Western art, and Slavonic folklore, is a mixed bag of imagery that incorporates surreal human-animal combinations that the artist refers to as “part majesty and part mystery.”
Hopefully this new infusion of life will help to get the forlorn Fillmore building a new lease on life. It’s prime for a rehab considering its close proximity to the Central Terminal and Torn Space. PreservationReady.org has some history on the building.
This project is supported in part by Broadway-Fillmore Neighborhood Housing Services and M&T Bank, as well as Hyatt’s Graphic Supply Company, and leadership funding from the County of Erie and the City of Buffalo.