By Eli Webb (29), Miami
Home » Culture » Youth Talent to be featured in new Mining-Themed Murals to Adorn Copper Corridor Towns

Youth Talent to be featured in new Mining-Themed Murals to Adorn Copper Corridor Towns

A contest for young artists is bringing new color to the Copper Corridor in the form of mining-themed murals. 

Artists under age 30 were invited to submit designs, and the winning murals will appear on walls in Globe, Miami, Superior, Kearny, Hayden, and Winkelman. 

The artists were allowed to use any medium, but the designs had to include some reference to mining – past, present, or future. Twenty-nine entries were received, and community leaders in the Copper Corridor chose the winners by selecting pieces they want to see as murals in their towns. 

In addition to seeing their designs featured in their communities, the selected artists received $500 in monetary awards. Experienced muralists will work with the young artists to bring the murals to life.

Abriana Torres, 16, lives in the Hayden-Winkelman area. Her mural, “You Can Grow Your Dreams Anywhere,” was selected for a wall in her hometown, and her award check was presented at a Winkelman Town Council meeting. Erica Raymond of Globe is the muralist tapped to work with Abriana. 

By Abriana Torrez (16), Hayden-Winkelman

Eli Webb, 29, hails from Miami. His piece, “Miners at the Gateway,” was selected by the Town of Miami and will be painted on the Arizona Farm Bureau wall along Highway 60. Jason Begay, an experienced muralist from Phoenix, will work with Eli in the coming weeks to paint the mural.

By Eli Webb (29), Miami

Miela Verdugo, 11, lives in Miami. She designed a mural selected by Kearny for a wall fronting Highway 177. Miela will be honored among her peers at Lee Kornegay Junior High with a presentation of her award check.

By Miela Verdugo (11), Miami

Two additional artists, Allie Stevens, 15, of Peridot and Matthew Bolinger, 15, of Globe, created designs selected for transformation into poster-sized coloring pages, perfect for community events. They will each receive an award of $250.

By Allie Stevens (15), Peridot
By Matthew Bollinger (15), Globe

The local arts nonprofit Love Where You Live sponsored the contest, which was supported by grant funding from the Arizona Rural Arts Foundation, with additional funding from the Arizona Community Foundation.

LWYL chose a mining theme because “mining is an integral part of our heritage and current economic vitality,” said Thea Wilshire, one of the organization’s co-founders. 

“We believe there’s power in uniting the towns of the Copper Corridor and promoting the region as a whole. There’s a saying that a rising tide lifts all boats. We think this is true and represents a previously under-tapped promotional idea for us.”

“We want to empower the community champions who will turn our livable spaces into lovable places,” says Regina Ortega, co-founder of LWYL.

“Our region has creative folks who are, or will be, the co-makers of our town’s future. We want to identify them now and support them as they grow into their talents. They are our future,” Ortega said.

Placemaking is the process of creating spaces where people want to live, work, learn, and visit, and placekeeping is the celebration and enhancement of what makes a place unique. LWYL is committed to both.

To support the work of LWYL, contact them at 808-373-0032 or email

About Thea Wilshire

Thea Wilshire works as an author, psychologist, speaker, healthcare consultant, and AirBnB host.  Her passions include community development, the creation of public spaces, trying new adventures, and sharing her therapy dog with schools and medical facilities.  Find her blog at

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *