The City of Ocala, through its Cultural Arts and Sciences Division, has announced the installation of four mural panels at Scott Springs Park, located at 2825 SW 24th Ave.
The double-sided panels feature two separate mural exhibits, “A Journey Though Marti City” by Maggie Weakley and “Glimpses into the History of Marion County’s Black Culture” by Jordan Shapot.
The murals were commissioned through the City’s Cultural Arts and Sciences Division to depict the multicultural history of the Ocala community. Guests viewing the murals are treated to two very different scenes depending on which side they stand. While one side depicts the Cuban culture that thrived in the 1890s, the opposite side showcases the City’s Black and Black Seminole history. Both sets of panels are inspired by local historical photographs.
“The Legacy Panels, by local artists Jordan Shapot and Maggie Weakly, are a great addition to Scott Springs,” said Laura Walker, Cultural Arts and Sciences division head. “Providing an element of public art and a nod to local history, the panels will enhance the serene and reflective nature of this public park.”
To learn more about the City’s history and how it influenced the creation of the Legacy visit https://www.ocalafl.org/our-city/live/historic-preservation.
Maggie Weakley received a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Columbus College of Art and Design in Columbus, Ohio. Weakly relocated to Ocala and is actively involved in the arts community, including her position as administrative coordinator for Fine Arts for Ocala and previous vice president of Magnolia Art Xchange.
“Creating the Marti City Murals was a great honor for me since my family is Cuban,” Weakly said. “Learning about the great Cuban history that was right here in Ocala was not only surprising but also fascinating for me, and I ended up doing a ton of research to know everything I could about this period of time.”
Jordan Shapot is a local artist and painter from Central Florida and resides in Ocala. A graduate of Savannah College of Art and Design, he received a Bachelor of Fine Arts in illustration. As an emerging artist within the Ocala art scene, Shapot has increasingly made a name for himself through a variety of public and private art projects.
“My designs represent Ocala and Marion County’s legacy through the use of historical reference photos,” Shapot said. “After doing some digging on the internet to find images that I wanted to base my murals on, I found these four fantastic historical photos to use. These four images represent staples in Ocala’s development.”
The City of Ocala offers many visual art opportunities in city spaces. Public art is complimentary and is intended for everyone to enjoy. Detailed information about current programming and future projects can be found at www.ocalafl.org/culturalarts. Self-guided public art tours are available at Ocala.oncell.com.