Renowned illustrator paints mural at ETSU

Published 1:05 pm Friday, March 31, 2023

University invites community to participate in #ETSUPride365 
JOHNSON CITY – A partnership with Taylor Swift. Producing street art for Super Bowl 2020. Crafting murals and launching a viral #WhatLiftsYou social media campaign following the devastating school shooting in Parkland, Fla.
Kelsey Montague, one of the best-known illustrators in the world, has taken her creative craft across the globe.
Add East Tennessee State University and Johnson City to her portfolio.
Montague finished painting a mural at the university earlier this week. Located near the Ballad Health Athletic Center (Mini-Dome) and the parking garage, the navy and gold mural features design elements unique to both ETSU and the region: the Ballad Health Athletic Center, Tennessee’s Tri-Star, the ETSU Carillon, 1911 (the year ETSU was founded), the Appalachian Mountains and rhododendrons.
“All my work is positive in some way. I always want my work to be uplifting,” she said.
Despite her work with celebrities and international causes, this marks only the fourth mural she has painted for a college and the first in the South.
“I am a huge fan of universities. The energy and the creativity are always so exciting,” she said. “I hope the university community knows that this is for them.”
ETSU, in turn, hopes the community will use the new mural to spread positivity online.
“We encourage visitors to snap a selfie in front of the mural and then share it on social media with #ETSUPride365,” said Barbara Mason, director of Trademark Licensing at ETSU and the one who helped bring Montague to campus. “We invite you to become part of this exciting piece of art, as well as help us promote the community that we all call home.”
“Whoever walks by this, it’s a gift,” added Montague. “It’s for you.”
Montague’s paintings have proven wildly popular.
Visitors to Nashville may have noticed her work in the Gulch. Long lines often greet those hoping to take a selfie in front of the mural.
Those wishing to see the mural for themselves are invited to stop by Parking Services Monday through Friday, 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m., for a parking pass. Parking is free and open to the public outside those hours. Parking Services is located at 132 Stout Drive.

Subscribe to our free email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox