The 60-by-20-foot mural, which depicts a waving American flag with a soldier proudly saluting, fittingly covers the main façade of the American Legion Post 92 building at 211 N. 21st Ave. The artist, Joel Blenz, is a Navy veteran. Blenz crafted the mural with wire, metal and paint to create a 3-D illusion of a real flag. “As a Navy veteran, I think the idea of a realistic flag is symbolically powerful to show allegiance and strength for the U.S.,” said Blenz, a Queens, NY native who served as a Navy aviation technician for six years out of high school.
A self-taught artist, he began his career close to 40 years ago and transitioned to studio work about 10 years ago. While Blenz has created 40 to 50 murals, the patriotic piece, presented unique challenges because of the construction aspect, which required a staple gun and concrete staples to affix the wire and metal. “That’s what makes it fun,” he said, “It’s challenging. I’m taking my work to another level.”
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