Local artist brings library-goers a new mural

Bock-Nelson painting her mural.

A picture may be worth a thousand words, but a mural of that picture that is the size of a wall may be worth a bit more. In an effort to beautify the children books section, Quincy Public Library hired a local artist to decorate the room with her artwork.

Jennifer Bock-Nelson is a teacher, abstract artist, and thanks to the Quincy Public Library, a realism muralist. Nancy Dolan is the director of Quincy Public Library. Dolan said they hired Bock-Nelson after seeing her idea for this mural.

"We just wanted to do something to make the space more beautiful. We were just so pleased when she did this. It looked so realistic. As she mentioned, when you look up close, it just looks like small bits, it looks so simple. But when you stand back it looks so realistic and beautiful," Dolan said.

"Nobody likes to live with blank walls. I think it is inspiring, especially in a library. You open up and mentally can enter into a world, so I like to think that visually you can also enter into other worlds," Bock-Nelson said.

Bock-Nelson is an abstract artist. Working on lifelike murals is out of her comfort zone, but she felt like taking a leap of faith.

"It's kind of intimidating to look at a scene like this and try to think of the large thing, but just breaking it down into individual shapes, the trees, you kind of have to work somewhat abstractly. When you get close to the mural, it is a bunch of dots and looser shapes. It's not until you get further back that it starts to come together as something more ultra-representational," Bock-Nelson said.

She said her artwork has had a wonderful response.

"The response has been great. Adults and children alike. I think they like that it is so large that they could walk into the scene. You know, walk and sit by the river, walk into the forest," Bock-Nelson said.

She also painted other murals in the library, such as a forest scene and paintings of trees native to the Tri-State area.

It took her 100 hours to paint the river view mural.