Work gets started on large downtown Richmond mural

Downtown Richmond is about to look more artsy with the start of a mural from local artist Richard Muro Salazar.
Local artist Richard Muro Salazar began painting a mural Monday at the corner of Macdonald Avenue and Harbour Way.

Richmond residents are going to get used to seeing muralist Richard Muro Salazar at the corner of Macdonald Avenue and Harbour Way.

On Monday, the 28-year-old artist started painting a giant mural on the southwest corner of the downtown intersection. With the help of volunteers, the piece will take about a month to complete, Salazar said.

A $3,000 mini-grant from the Richmond Arts & Culture Commission is paying for the mural as part of a long-range effort to improve downtown Richmond. Salazar said he waited a year to get the green light and was itching to get started.

“It’s going to be a lot of work,” Salazar said. “I got a nice start today.”

Salazar said he welcomes walk-up volunteers, and he expects other artists to add their own creations to the piece as well.

“I’ll be here every day, weekends included,” the artist said.

Salazar drew a rough sketch before starting the mural but said the piece will largely be done freehand. The mural will highlight the principles of Alive & Free Richmond, an organization promoting ways to reduce youth violence.

The mural is one of 11 art projects to receive Neighborhood Public Art mini-grants this year.

Salazar is a local artist who has painted murals along Richmond Greenway. His murals are also in Mexico City, Nicaragua, Los Angeles and Las Vegas. After he is done with his current piece, he said he plans to travel to Peru for his next mural.