Mural, Map Added to Downtown Building Facade

Mural, Map Added to Downtown Building Facade


The temporary façade of a Downtown building has been turned into a canvas, thanks to a partnership between the Downtown Albany Business Improvement District (BID), Albany Center Gallery, and Fairbank Properties. 27 N. Pearl Street, owned by Fairbank Properties and currently under renovation, is now home to a 10’ x 20’ map of Downtown and a larger than life mural that, when complete, will stretch from the front of the building down Maiden Lane.

Artist Rachel Baxter drew inspiration for the piece, “You Are Here, Too,” from her time hiking and camping, and the connection between our environment and ourselves. In creating the piece, Baxter hopes people will be reminded to connect with their surroundings. The mural, one of several recently completed or in the pipeline, highlights Albany Center Gallery’s mission to both exhibit contemporary work in their gallery space, as well as expand beyond the gallery walls by bringing art into the community. 

The map, an enlarged version of the guide available in various Downtown locations and online at downtownalbany.org, lists all eateries, retail and retail-related businesses, hotels, and historic sites. With a score of 92, Walk Score rates Downtown as Albany’s second most walkable neighborhood. The enhancement offers one more reason for residents, employees and visitors to peruse the City’s newest neighborhood.

“As Downtown welcomes more people to live, work and play, amenities like the BID map and mural serve to activate vacant spaces while getting people to stop and take in everything we have to offer,” says Georgette Steffens, executive director of the Downtown Albany BID. “From public art exhibits and historic architecture to world-class dining, shopping and entertainment, there is so much in our District to experience.” 

“Our goal with Capital Walls is to bring more public art into the community as a creative way to transform spaces, add energy, create an identity and provide unique experiences for those who visit, live and work here,” says Tony Iadicicco, Albany Center Gallery executive director. “It provides local artists with new job opportunities and helps make downtown Albany a destination with a unique identity."

“I am honored to be able to contribute my work to Downtown and hope it will serve as a soft reminder to be present and appreciate beauty in all forms,” says Baxter. 

“Downtown is going through an evolution, and just as we are excited to bring retail and residential opportunities to this District, we are equally happy to work with the BID and Gallery to add attractions such as these to our streetscape,” says David Sarraf, Fairbank Properties co-owner.

The combination of a larger-than-life guide to Downtown and the mural are expected to be up for approximately eight months while work on the site continues. Once completed, the map can be moved to another location and, condition permitting, pieces of the mural will be sold to benefit the Albany Center Gallery.