Worzalla Commissions Portage County Artist to Paint Mural on Building Expansion
Book printer participates in CREATE Portage County’s Paint the County program to support local arts community
Worzalla, an employee-owned book printer specializing in printing high-quality children’s books, cookbooks, and hard-cover best sellers, teamed up with CREATE Portage County’s Paint the County program and local artist Stephon Kiba Freeman to create a 90-feet-long by 20-feet-high mural on the side of Worzalla’s newest addition to its facilities. The mural depicts a young girl standing on a stack of books surrounded by settings from the books she reads, including scenes from space, the ocean depths, tropical islands, and more.
Last year, Worzalla completed Phase II of its modernization and expansion plan which included an addition of 50,000 square feet to its book manufacturing headquarters. Around the same time, CREATE Portage County and Arts Wisconsin launched Paint the County, a program that pays local artists to create murals in the community.
“Worzalla is deeply invested in the Portage County and Stevens Point community, so when I learned about the Paint the County program, I knew that our new building expansion would be a great location to be the home of one of these murals,” said Worzalla President and CEO Jim Fetherston. “I’m glad we could give Stephon a platform for his talent and support the local arts community all while brightening up our neighborhood. The result is beautiful and highlights the joys of reading.”
Artist Stephon Kiba Freeman’s painting proposal was chosen for the Worzalla mural. Freeman received his BFA from University of Wisconsin Stevens Point and has his own business Kiba Freeman Art where he specializes in custom spray-painted art and projects.
“I am grateful to Worzalla for providing this wonderful platform for me to portray how I imagine my daughter views reading — fun and whimsical,” said Freeman describing the mural. “Each panel depicts something she imagined while reading. Some scenes are flowing off the panels because imagination can’t be bound by two-dimensional pages.”
The Worzalla mural is the second project since the Paint the County program’s launch. The mural was completed in late June and took about three weeks to paint. The mural is viewable from Dixon Street which runs on the southside of the Worzalla headquarters located at 3535 Jefferson St. in Stevens Point, Wisconsin.
“Paint the County is a great way to show support for the arts. The goal is to make 50 murals in Portage County over time,” said Greg Wright, CREATE Portage County Executive Director. “Through murals, art gets integrated into the community in a way that it’s there for everyone to enjoy. We are so grateful for local businesses like Worzalla who help fund these projects.” Worzalla has a history of supporting the community in a variety of ways, including book donation drives, sponsoring literacy events and participating in fundraisers and charity events. More information is available at Worzalla.com. CREATE Portage County’s Paint the County program is fundraising for more mural projects. More information is available at CreateProtageCounty.org/PaintTheCounty.