By Bobby Tanzilo Senior Editor/Writer Published Aug 19, 2020 at 3:02 PM

Seven murals have been completed and two more are on their way toward completion in downtown Menomonee Falls as part of a partnership between Milwaukee’s Wallpapered City and the Downtown Menomonee Falls Business Improvement District.

Wallpapered City was the force behind Black Cat Alley and has partnered with other municipalities and BIDs to create murals in Wauwatosa, Milwaukee and West Allis, among others.

Some of the muralists are Milwaukee artists.

The completed murals are:

  • N89 W16785 Appleton Ave., "Sweet Dreams" by Anat Ronen
  • N88 W16688 Main St., "Hunter’s Prayer" by Taylor Berman
  • N88 W16726 Appleton Ave., "Want For Nothing & Have it All" by Nova Czarnecki
  • N88w16624 Appleton Ave., "Beyond Your Wildest Dreams" by Fred Kaems
  • N88 W16712 Appleton Ave., Artists: Kathleen Murphy Willer, Liz Hoover, Madelyn Mascotti, Vivian Johnson
  • N88 W16712 Appleton Ave., has a mural alley between two buildings. Lighting is planned to extend hours of mural viewing
  • N88W16683 Main St., to be completed by the end of the year by artist Adam Nilson

The plan for the mural project pre-dates the pandemic shutdown, said Felicia Reichard, director of the Downtown BID, and the shutdown did not hamper the work.

"We didn’t hibernate, we got ahead of it all," she said. "It gave people something to look forward to when they really didn’t know what was coming next."

Reichard added that there has been a 75 percent increase in downtown foot traffic that she attributes to the new murals, all of which are within walking distance of one another.

"We believe that street art completely changes a place," said Stacey Williams-Ng, director of Wallpapered City. "The murals become landmarks that people can identify with, and make their own memories with. It’s so much more than paint on a wall when an artist makes an original piece in a public place."

One of the artists is 6-year-old Menomonee Falls resident, Vivian Johnson, who was inspired by the first completed mural, the 120-foot-long "Sweet Dreams," painted by Houston artist Anat Ronen.

Due to the success of the murals, the Downtown Menomonee Falls BID and Wallpapered City plan to collaborate of more murals in 2021.

You can learn more about the murals and see photographs of them here.

Bobby Tanzilo Senior Editor/Writer

Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., where he lived until he was 17, Bobby received his BA-Mass Communications from UWM in 1989 and has lived in Walker's Point, Bay View, Enderis Park, South Milwaukee and on the East Side.

He has published three non-fiction books in Italy – including one about an event in Milwaukee history, which was published in the U.S. in autumn 2010. Four more books, all about Milwaukee, have been published by The History Press.

With his most recent band, The Yell Leaders, Bobby released four LPs and had a songs featured in episodes of TV's "Party of Five" and "Dawson's Creek," and films in Japan, South America and the U.S. The Yell Leaders were named the best unsigned band in their region by VH-1 as part of its Rock Across America 1998 Tour. Most recently, the band contributed tracks to a UK vinyl/CD tribute to the Redskins and collaborated on a track with Italian novelist Enrico Remmert.

He's produced three installments of the "OMCD" series of local music compilations for OnMilwaukee.com and in 2007 produced a CD of Italian music and poetry.

In 2005, he was awarded the City of Asti's (Italy) Journalism Prize for his work focusing on that area. He has also won awards from the Milwaukee Press Club.

He can be heard weekly on 88Nine Radio Milwaukee talking about his "Urban Spelunking" series of stories.