Vejigante Godmask

Mural Title:

Vejigante Godmask

Date of Completion:

Summer 2022

Mural Location:

Starling Garage at the Scioto Peninsula, Columbus, Ohio

Artist Statement:

This mural is a celebration of Columbus’ culture and diversity. For this mural, I took inspiration from the indigenous people who originally inhabited this land to the diverse people, like myself, who now call Columbus home.

In my work, I am known for a motif I create called Godmasks. Godmasks represent and embody qualities we strive to achieve. For this mural concept, I have created a Godmask with direct inspiration from my Puerto Rican heritage.  This Godmask is a Vejigante, a celebratory mask Puerto Ricans create with roots in Spanish, African, and Taino traditions. Like the Godmask in this mural, Vejigantes usually have many horns and are covered in bright colors and patterns.

Looking at the location for this mural, I was inspired by the indigenous meaning of the words Scioto and Olentangy. Scioto is Wyandot for “deer.” Olentangy is a Delaware word meaning “river of the red face paint.”  Interestingly, the Olentangy River was originally called Keenhongsheconsepung, which in Delaware means “stone for your knife stream,” a reference to the shale found along its shores.

This mural features a Vejigante Godmask in the foreground with red facial markings and antlers inspired by deer.  In the background, my mural concept portrays a roughly striated pattern mimicking shale embankments on a river bed. The two distinct patterns in the background are different iterations of the carnation, Ohio’s state flower. The play of these two patterns also reminds us of the winding dance of the two rivers, Olentangy and Scioto.

This mural integrates my personal artistic style with Columbus’ rich history by providing a memorable and engaging aesthetic.  The influence of my Puerto Rican heritage in this mural provides an iconic image that is welcoming to all by representing the diverse fabric of our community.


3 New Public Arts Unveiled During Columbus Arts Festival, WBNS Channel 10 News, June 2022


Project Description:

This mural was created in partnership with the Columbus Downtown Development Corporation (CDDC) and Capitol South Community Urban Redevelopment Corporation for the Starling Garage on the Scioto Peninsula.  CDDC is a private, non-profit development corporation with a mission to lead city-changing projects in the heart of Ohio’s capital city. CDDC served as the Master Developer for the Columbus Commons project, an award-winning, mixed-use development, and redeveloped the 700,000 square-foot Lazarus Office Building. In addition, CDDC developed key placemaking spaces such as the Scioto Mile and Dorrian Green, as well as cultural institutions like the first-ever satellite location of the American Museum of National History at COSI and the new National Veterans Memorial and Museum.

CDDC is leading the effort on The Peninsula to execute the vision for an active, mixed-use 18-hour district. The Peninsula will be home to miles of waterfront views and pathways, acres and acres of parks and community greenspaces, conveniently connected bike trails, easy access to Scioto River canoeing and kayaking, and close proximity to Downtown’s most popular places, happenings, and events.

To accommodate the new users of the Peninsula, two garages fronting Starling and State Streets have been constructed. To complement the catalytic investments on the Peninsula, CDDC placed three murals on the Starling Garage at the pedestrian level.

About the Artist:

Adam Hernandez is a Columbus, Ohio based mural artist who has proven himself in the realm of public art. He has worked with international organizations, such as Upfest, to create custom murals that are both vibrant and engaging. The Upfest Godmask Mural is a piece that was created as part of Europe's largest international mural festival.  Adam's commissions are not limited to the festival scene, however. As a local artist, he has created numerous public art installations that have transformed the streets of American cities such as Columbus, Ohio, Wauwatosa, Wisconsin, and Nashville, Tennessee. Adam’s work as a street artist has garnered him a reputation as a talented muralist. Whether Adam is working on a large-scale mural or a small-scale commission, Adam's attention to detail and passion for his craft shines through in every project he undertakes.

In short, Adam Hernandez is a midwest based mural artist who is making waves in the world of public art. His ability to work with international organizations and create stunning murals in the festival setting is a testament to his talent and dedication. Whether you are looking for a custom mural or a public art installation, Adam is the artist to call.

Contact Adam

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