As an artist, Christina Hollering typically creates her pieces with cut paper, linocuts, or mixed media. However, her competitive spirit urged her to apply (and ultimately create) the “Reconnecting to Our Waterways” mural located at Jiffy Lube Fall Creek Road location.
Much of your art is centered around nature. Can you tell us a little bit about why you are drawn to this subject?
I am an eighties kid. I grew up before the internet and only had a tiny black and white TV with basic cable to entertain me. I also grew up in a military family that moved every few years. We lived in Panama, Oklahoma, California, Nevada, and finally, Indiana. Every time we moved, I found myself without friends. As a result, I spent a lot of time outside climbing trees, making secret hideouts in the side of mountains, chasing lizards across the desert, foraging for bananas, coconuts, and berries, and of course, catching any insect that crossed my path. Nature was always there for me, always my first friend.
What sparked your interest in applying for a Jiffy Lube mural?
I’d seen other artist friends of mine doing these murals and “paint a mural” had been on my art bucket list for a while. Truth be told, I don’t consider myself a competitive person until it comes to art. So of course, I had to apply!
And I’d also fallen in love with the idea behind the Jiffy Lube mural project and considered it a sign that it was time to apply. I was completely elated and a little nervous when I was chosen. After all, I’d never painted a mural before but decided to take it one step at a time and solicit the advice of the very artist friends that inspired me to apply in the first place.
Did the location selection help you decide on the design concept?
Actually, I’d already decided on the design concept before I applied. I’ve been active in several organizations that promote conservation and protection of our natural resources, including Reconnecting to Our Waterways, Indiana Wildlife Federation, and Friends of the White River.I realized that Indiana’s water pollution was an important topic that needed to be brought to the attention of the public in order to motivate action. I’d also just finished a summer filled with kayaking and canoeing on several of Indiana’s waterways. So when the call for artists rolled around, I was already in the mindset that I wanted to pay tribute to one of Indiana’s most valuable natural resources. Ironically, I was initially chosen to paint a different Jiffy Lube on 96th street. However, at the last minute, I was relocated to 79th and Fall Creek which worked out perfectly for the waterways design I’d already chosen.
Since your mural is a tribute to Indiana’s waterways, what are some of your favorites?
A few of my favorite waterways include White River, Eagle Creek Reservoir, and Sugar Creek. I lived most of my life in the California and Nevada desert and the only waterways I’d ever seen (other than the ocean) were man-made. I would however, come to Indiana every summer to visit family. During those trips we would canoe down Sugar Creek, jet ski across Raccoon Lake, and tube through Patoka Lake. After that, I was hooked and in love with Indiana’s waterways.
Tell us about the design and the importance of the blue herons.
I included the herons because the design is based on my kayaking adventures through several of Indiana’s creeks, rivers, and reservoirs. I try to record all of the creatures I spot during these adventures and one of the most numerous and majestic of them all is the great blue heron. It’s silly, but there are two because that is how many I saw on my first kayaking trip down White River. They are also an integral part of our ecosystem and one we will lose if we do not take action to protect our waterways.
In addition to blue herons, you can also find banded water snakes and dragonflies combined with the abstracted wave and sun patterns and a kayak-and-paddle motif.
How long did it take you to finish the mural?
The mural is not actually painted on the building. To preserve the natural brick, I used 8, 4ft x10ft panels. It took a day to install and hang the panels. One day to grid and sketch out the design. And five days to paint the 10ft by 30ft mural.
How do you feel now that the mural is complete?
I felt incredibly relieved, as I always do after a large project, as well as proud. I’d never painted a mural before and it seemed like such an intimidating project. Once it was done, I kept stepping back from it and thinking, “I did that! I actually did that!” It’s also fun to hear other people’s reactions and see their selfies and photos with the mural. It has a life of its own now and it’s so big that I can’t hide from it. It’s addicting. Once you work on a large scale like a mural, it’s hard to go back to fiddling around with tiny pieces alone in your studio. Not to mention all of the public interactions and immediate responses and praises you get.
“My hope is that my work will cultivate a desire in others to explore and discover the mysteries of the world around us, beginning with our own backyards.” – Christina Hollering
You can connect with Christina through the following channels:
Since 2016, our Every Part Matters mural project has been bringing beautiful art to the exterior walls of our stores and has been helping Indiana artists grow through their work (an extension of our award-winning Growing People through Work program!). Every Part Matters is part of our Growing People through Work initiative, a corporate commitment to building up our employees and the communities where they live and work. The murals are presented in partnership with the Arts Council of Indianapolis, Indianapolis’ local arts agency. Click Here to learn about all the artists.