City wants ‘controversial’ mural in N. Portland removed

Mural is called "Let Dreams Soar"

At least 1 person has complained about this mural, saying it depicts children committing suicide, Aug. 7, 2017. (KOIN)

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — A mural in North Portland, which some describe as “controversial,” has caught the attention of city officials, who want the piece of art removed.

Despite a complaint from at least one resident and the city getting involved, Adam Brock Ciresi is determined to keep his mural up and is even prepared to go to court if necessary.

Ciresi said his mural, which shows kids and crows flying near the St. Johns Bridge, is iconic and inspiring.

At least 1 person has complained about this mural in North Portland, saying it depicts kids jumping off the St. Johns Bridge, Aug. 7, 2017. (KOIN)

The mural is called “Let Dreams Soar” and is painted on the side of a residential building, just blocks away from the iconic bridge.

Ciresi spent a little more than 4 days creating his latest piece, which he believes promotes creativity to younger generations.

While some people think the mural depicts kids jumping off of the bridge, the man who owns the home where the mural is loves it.

“We wanted to do something that everyone in the neighborhood can take pride in,” Ted Occhialino said.

Homeowner Occhialino also commissioned the mural.

Residents Jesse Ellison and Kathy Moon also said they enjoyed the colorful mural in the neighborhood.

Ellison said, “Isn’t this what Portland is about? We want it! We want more of this!”

According to Ciresi, a city official gave him “a very gentle, quiet nod” after denying him a permit. Under city law, murals can’t be on residential buildings with 4 or fewer units. Ciresi’s mural is on the side of a single-family home.

While there have been some complaints, many people seem to enjoy the colorful mural in their neighborhood, Aug. 7, 2017. (KOIN)

While the mural does violate city laws, Ciresi and Occhialino are both ready to fight it out in court.

“So if that means we’re becoming an advocate for loosening these laws around public art and where they can and can’t be placed, then so be it. I’m ready,” Ciresi said.

If you’re interested in creating a mural, the city has a list of rules and regulations to follow.