Ceramic tiled mural unveiled in Rochester Hills

What’s happening: A new mural has been completed in Rochester Hills, and one made of ceramic tiles rather than paint. The Centennial Tile Mural was unveiled at Thelma G. Spencer Park and can be found alongside the Beach House there. The tiled mosaic was coordinated by the Paint Creek Center for the Arts and sponsored by the Michigan Arts and Culture Council and the City of Rochester Hills to celebrate 100 years of park service in the city.

What it is: The Centennial Tile Mural was created by members of the Rochester Hills community themselves, with each tile designed and created by somebody different. The tiles were then assembled by artist Michelle Sider, who arranged the individual tiles into a 4.5 ft. by 20 ft. mosaic that evokes a starburst, meant to represent the sunlight that bathes the park.

The Centennial Tile Mural was created by members of the Rochester Hills community. (Photo: Jason Dale / City of Rochester Hills)
Why it’s important: “This project allowed the public to physically and safely leave a piece of themselves in their community,” says Nicole Bush, art education manager at Paint Creek Center for the Arts.

About the artist: Michelle Sider is a mosaic artist that works from her Huntington Woods studio whose work can be found At Twisted Fish Gallery in Elk Rapids. and Main Street Gallery in Leland. Her involvement in Rochester Hills came on recommendation from members of the Detroit Institute of Arts.

Mosaic artist Michelle Sider. (Photo courtesy of Michelle Sider)
What they’re saying: “I love the premise of the Centennial Ceramic Mural project which was to provide an opportunity for residents of varying abilities to participate in creating this ceramic mural,” says Sider. “Each tile is hand carved by a member of the community and has a unique look yet the mural as a whole has a cohesive and uplifting image that enhances the park and celebrates the Centennial year of the city. It was an honor to design and assemble this mural for the city."

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MJ Galbraith is a writer and musician living in Detroit. Follow him on Twitter @mikegalbraith.