We offer our heartfelt gratitude to the Michigan Arts and Culture Commission and Main Street Oakland County for generous grant funding which allowed us to expand this program to include 7 works of art in our first year! Thank you to the talented artists and generous property owners who applied for our inaugural 2023 program. Applications for the 2024 program will be announced later in the year. Follow @downtownferndale to stay updated!

The public is invited to take a self-guided art walk to see these murals in person, as well as others in Downtown Ferndale through a google map. Click here to view map of locations!

Downtown Ferndale is beyond honored to have won the Downtown Beautification Award for You Belong Here Downtown Mural Program. The award was presented at Main Street Oakland County’s Main Event, recognizing excellence in Oakland County historic downtown and neighborhood commercial corridor management.

Downtown Beautification Award Criteria

Placemaking attracts businesses, customers, and residents to our Main Streets. Downtowns that  offer exciting and unique things to do and see are more likely to experience greater investment.  This award is for a project that has improved the physical appearance of a district through  landscaping/streetscaping, public art, improved public spaces, or new private development.

Downtown Beautification Award Rules & Eligibility

• Project can be publicly- developed, privately developed, or a combination.

• Project must contribute to the overall quality of the built environment of your downtown.

• Project must be accessible to all the stakeholders of the downtown district.

All questions can be directed to Sommer Realy, DDA Engagement Manager at [email protected], 248-546-1632.

Ferndale Celebrates Diversity and Community Spirit with the
First Annual Downtown Ferndale Mural Program

Downtown Ferndale is proud to announce the successful completion of the first annual Downtown Ferndale Mural Program, an initiative that brought together artists from diverse backgrounds to create captivating 6 murals and 1 art installation throughout our vibrant city. This program was organized by the Ferndale Downtown Development Authority (DDA) in partnership with the Ferndale Arts & Cultural Commission, aimed to enrich the visual experience of Downtown Ferndale while fostering a sense of belonging for all who visit.
The theme for the inaugural program, “You Belong Here,” reflected the values of inclusivity and community that define Ferndale. The selected artists were chosen from over 50 applications for how they encapsulated the spirit of this theme in their creations. The result has been vibrant and dynamic murals that celebrate the rich diversity of our city.

2023 “You Belong Here” Selected Artists & Locations

Artist: Melanie Formica (She/Her), Detroit resident
Location: The Emory, rear entrance, 22700 Woodward Ave
Mural Title: Dolls of Identity
Website: melanieformicaart.com
Instagram: @melk666art
This piece is about sending joy, light and encouragement into the universe. “Living life is hard for all of us in very different and relative ways. The world needs all sorts of people who have lived all sorts of lives,” says Melanie of her inspiration for her art.

Artist: India Solomon (She/Her), Ferndale resident
Location: Natural Patch, West Troy St entrance, 221 West Nine Mile West Troy
Mural Title: A Chance to Thrive
Website: indiasolomon.com
Instagram: @indysolomon
India’s mural, “A Chance to Thrive,” explores what it means to live well and feel good. With a balanced color scheme and warmth, the artwork symbolizes Ferndale’s commitment to inclusivity and offers a meditation on thriving.
Artist: Shana Preuett (She/Her), Royal Oak resident
Location: Bakehouse46, 301 West Nine Mile
Mural Title: Celebrate All That You Are
Website: smpartanddesign.com
Instagram: @.art.design
Shana’s mural celebrates individuality and belonging with playful imagery. The mural’s simplicity allows viewers to find their own stories within the symbolism, reflecting the spirit of community support and acceptance in Ferndale.

Artist: Stephanie Chisholm (They/Them), Sterling Heights resident
Location: Breckenridge Parking Lot, 22901-22965 Woodward Avenue
Mural Title: Destination Paradise
Instagram: @stephanieprism
“Destination Paradise,” is an abstract mural abundant with colors and patterns, inspired by Yusef Lateef’s song of the same name. The artwork represents an active neighborhood where each mark contributes to completing the larger harmonious composition, symbolizing a sense of belonging.
Artist: Ammy Amorette Spencer (She/Her), Grant Township resident
Location: Broock Real Estate, 413 West Nine Mile
Mural Title: UNO
Website: ammyamorette.scd.cl
Facebook: @ammyamorettepainter
Ammy’s mosaic mural, “UNO,” symbolizes unity and collaboration, demonstrating that everyone is part of the same world. The artwork aims to foster a sense of belonging and happiness among viewers.
Artist: Tony Whlgn (He/Him), Detroit resident
Location: Howe’s Bayou, rear entrance, 22848 Woodward
Mural Title: You Belong Here
Website: toneytonytone.com
Instagram: @tonywhlgn
Tony envisioned a vibrant and fun safari-themed mural, where plants, trees, and hidden characters represent the diversity of the city and spell the phrase “You Belong Here.” The artwork aims to activate and celebrate the community’s youth and new businesses.

Artist: Su Majewski (She/Her), St. Clair Shores resident
Location: The dot Parking Garage, 221 West Troy Street, and several other locations around downtown
Website: www.sumajetski.weebly.com
Instagram: @sumajetski
Su’s mirror faces mural series reflects the diversity of Ferndale, where visitors can see themselves within the artwork. The portraits represent equality and togetherness, embodying the theme “You Belong Here.” What began as a pandemic project for this artist will now be shared with the entire Downtown Ferndale community!

2023 Murals

Program Contact

Sommer Realy
DDA Acting Executive Director + Engagement Manager
[email protected]

2023 Mural Program Summary

The 2023 program is now closed. The 2024 Downtown Mural Program theme and application period will be announced in late 2023. Feel free to contact the Ferndale DDA at (248) 546-1632 or by email at [email protected] with any questions.

2023 Timeline
• Application Announcement: Feb 18, 2023 COMPLETE
• Application Deadline: March 13, 2023 COMPLETE
• Advisory Committee Review: April COMPLETE
• Announcement of Selections: May COMPLETE
• Art Installation Deadline: Early September

2023 Theme – You Belong Here
Belonging in Downtown Ferndale can mean different things to different people. We encourage artists to search for inspiration in the theme in whatever way it speaks to them. The Ferndale DDA is proud to be part of a city which has received a perfect score on the Human Rights Campaign Municipal Equality Index for inclusive policies by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation and the Equality Federation Institute. Learn more here. In June 2020, the Ferndale DDA also formally supported the City of Ferndale’s ‘Declaration of Commitment to Antiracism’. Together, we pledged to use the moment as a learning opportunity. We pledged to evaluate what we could be doing differently in identifying racism and promoting a culture of openness, equity, and justice in our community. Discrimination in any form threatens this effort and undermines the vision that the Ferndale DDA has for our downtown.

Funding for this program provided by:

Other Art to Visit in Downtown Ferndale