- Environmental Services Division
- Storm Drain Art Project
Storm Drain Art Project
History of Project
This project began in 2014, when six chosen artists installed their original designs around the City of Superior. The second Storm Drain Art Project was in 2018. Six more murals were installed by local artists and residents. Additionally, in 2020, one more storm drain art mural was painted. Currently, there are 9 storm drain murals that are revitalized or installed in 2022.
Why is this project important?
The City of Superior, WI is surrounded by water. Seven main streams twist and turn through the city limits before entering Lake Superior (in Ojibwe, Gichigami, meaning “a sea, a large lake”), the largest of the five Great Lakes and the largest freshwater lake in the world (by surface area). These urban streams serve double-duty as naturally occurring aquatic habitats but also as part of the City of Superior's stormwater conveyance system. Storm drains or ditches direct stormwater (rain and snowmelt) from the streets to Superior’s streams, the St. Louis River Estuary, and eventually, Lake Superior.
Stormwater runoff is one of the leading causes of surface water pollution, and education and outreach are key components of any successful stormwater program. The 2022 Storm Drain Art Project had five (5) returning artists that have designed and installed murals in Downtown Superior.
We believe that storm drain art can increase the understanding that storm drains are a direct connection between our streets and streams. We believe in the power of local art and this Storm Drain Art Project is a way to bring positive messaging about stormwater and storm drains through Superior’s collective spirit.
2022 Storm Drain Art Project
The City of Superior Environmental Services Division (ESD) led a 2022 Storm Drain Art Project with support from the NW WI Lung Health Alliance (LHA) and a grant from the Wisconsin Arts Board with funds from the State of Wisconsin and the National Endowment for the Arts. ESD has worked with local artists, businesses, and organizations in Superior, to create a community-oriented project and raise awareness about stormwater pollution.
Check a Storm Drain Art Project Storymap to view the locations of the murals!
Meet the 2022 Artists!
I co-own blue arrow boutique on Tower Ave. & am the operator & artist behind Anndrea's Art. I am happiest when I am creating something, whether it is wearable art (jewelry), painting, or designing a graphic for our blue. clothing & goods line, or hand-printing garments for my annual fundraiser, FORIVER. It is my life's mission to create a positive legacy in my son's name, River Meriwether & the storm drain project will be in honor of him this year.
Hi! I am Chelsea, an artist, mother, and advocate for our very own community! I am extremely passionate about implementing therapeutic art into my everyday practice. I believe art is transformational and has the ability to empower individuals as well as communities. I am thankful for the opportunity to share my art with others while offering empowerment.
Chelsey was born, and currently resides in, a small(ish) town in Northwest Wisconsin: an area situated on the shores of Lake Superior: a truly magical place full of forests, fields, rocky coastlines, and delightful flora and fauna. Her work explores the relationship between animals, humans, the earth, and the unknown. There is a fair sense of the spiritual and a sense of being in her work: sometimes light-hearted and other times dark and violent. You can find her on Facebook and Instagram @chelseyraeart or at chelseymillerart.com.
More about Dawn soon! Pictured is Dawn and her daughters, Molly & Mazie.
My roots keep me grounded in Superior like they hold a tree along the river bank- although, I am now an Iowa transplant. Currently, my life is full of nature-inspired art, caffeine, and being an outdoor educator- while my dreams are full of Lake Superior and the north woods. I am honored to continue making art in a community that has provided me with so much love and support.
A few images of the 2014 Storm Drain artwork:
Artist: Colin Wiita - 5th St. and N. 23rd Ave. (East End)
Artist: Falyn McCotter
A few images of the 2018 storm drain artwork:
Artist: Emily Asp - Iowa Ave. and N. 19th St.
Artist: Chelsey Miller - N. 12th St. and Banks Ave.