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August 15, 2013

Flickinger a semifinalist to paint Brown v Board of Education mural inside State Capitol


With a bill signed allowing a mural of Brown v Board of Education to go inside the Kansas State Capitol building in Topeka, Cowley College art instructor Mark Flickinger was recently notified he is among the semifinalists to get an opportunity to submit designs for the mural.


pictureIn 2012, the Chairperson of the Capitol Preservation Committee issued a national call for artists/artistic teams to submit a Request for Qualification (RFQ) to design a mural in the Kansas State Capitol commemorating the U.S. Supreme Court decision, Brown v Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas. The mural will be displayed on the wall located outside of the Supreme Court chambers.

In 2010, the Kansas Legislature passed Senate Bill 54, which created the Capitol Preservation Committee and authorized the Committee to develop plans for the placement of a mural within the Kansas State Capitol to commemorate the landmark court case that ended the "separate but equal" law across the United States.

A total of 37 mural artists and collaborative groups from across the country sent in applications and Flickinger is now among the 14 semifinalists. He has until April 1, 2014 to come up with a series of designs. A panel will review submissions and finalists will be selected next summer. An interview process will take place next fall and an artist will be chosen.

Along with the Request for Qualification, Flickinger submitted photos of the murals he has done in Indiana, Kansas City, and Topeka. picture

“It was a lot of work to get to where I am in this process,” Flickinger said. “There are a lot of things that have to happen for a public works project to move forward. Now will be the fun part as research is one of my favorite parts of any project.”

The mural will be paid for by private dollars. Flickinger will submit designs for the mural and work on the best way to tell the story of Brown v Board of Education visually. If Flickinger is selected to conduct the mural he plans on doing the mural in sections and then have it transported.

“It is an honor to be able to research and work on this project,” Flickinger said. “I really want to do this painting.”

Along with the mural project, Flickinger will have his work on display at two venues in Manhattan. Flickinger’s paintings of the Flint Hills will be on display at the Strecker-Nelson Gallery in Manhattan, KS on Aug. 23 and will then be featured at the Flint Hills Discovery Center in Manhattan, Sept. 22 through the end of the year. His work will also be featured in a group show at American Legacy Gallery in Kansas City. The work is titled, “National Parks and Important Places”, with the exhibition opening November 15.