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Welland's Murals:
20. Where Water Meets Rail

About the Mural
Where Water Meets Rail by Lorraine Coakley-Black, Fonthill, Ontario. Painted in 1988, at 147 East Main Street, 9' by 23'. Unlike other murals that focus on people, Lorraine's mural portrays the Townline Tunnel and concentrates on forms of transportation. The people in the mural (a conductor, drivers and cyclists) are secondary to the transportation elements, although Lorraine personalized the characters as members of her family.

The Artist's Interpretation
"This mural was designed to illustrate the different forms of transportation occurring simultaneously. There is no interruption of travel. Trains, cars, bicycles and ships can all continue on their way without bridges having to be raised. With the important engineering accomplishment of tunnels, Welland residents were now able to save time."

"The immediate and daily response of the watchful public was very encouraging when doing such a large work. I felt supported by the passers-by. It was an experience that allowed me to feel more comfortable with the people watching me work."

Your Virtual Guide's Comments
The image here is one of a dynamic community whose industry has given rise to a fully integrated transportation system. The juxtaposition of the bikes alongside the freight train adds a human dimension to the scene, suggestive of the notion that industry, while frequently maligned, can produce real benefits in terms of quality of life. The representation of the train is somewhat reminiscent of 1920's art deco style, where minimal detail delivers a bold statement. 

About the Artist: Lorraine Coakley-Black, Fonthill, Ontario
Born and raised in St. Catharines, Lorraine developed a keen interest in art when she won her first contest in grade six. Since then, she has been developing her talent constantly and establishing herself in the freelance market. She is a graduate of the Fine Arts Department of the Ontario College of Art and now specializes in watercolour painting.

Lorraine's designs were selected for the Market Square logo contests in Welland and St. Catharines. She has had watercolour shows in several Niagara area galleries and has participated regularly in the annual Pelham Art Festival. Lorraine also teaches watercolour techniques at Niagara College. Her transportation mural was her first outdoor mural project.

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