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an added bonus post

I basically lived at my Wesley Foundation during my time at school, but there was one room that haunted me. Working for a church, you learn the ins and outs of it all, I knew the building very well, but this room just freaked me out.

The story goes that in the late 60s/early 70s, a mural was painted in this room. I was never able to get a straight answer from anyone about it all, but it was the strangest painting I've ever seen. You can speculate about the pictures, but in any case, it is not something that I have ever felt belonged in a church. I'll go through what I know about each picture, but what I know has been total speculation.

So why am I blogging about this? Because after 4+ years of trying to convince people that the room was unusable, finally there has been approval to paint over the room. Myself and my coworkers at the time would continually think about vandalizing it just so it would not be so freaky. When giving tours to new students, they were almost always freaked out, and I completely understood how Wesley could be seen as the "pagan" church on campus. (Yes, I actually had someone ask me that. No, Wesley is not pagan at all)


This wall tells of the story of Ring around the Rosy. Though the origin of the Nursery Rhyme is debateable. This wall has people holding hands and running around in a circle, falling down dead, and then the bodies being burnt.
There might be some Christian symbolism here, there appears to be a chalice with a red liquid in it, and maybe the doves/birds mean something but there is some strange stuff here too.
This wall has lots of plants and animals, just to take up space around the windows I guess.
King Arthur burns on a funeral pyre above the door, a startling image to leave the room with.

The wizard is kind of neat because he is painted around corners, but still, lets be honest he's kind of scary too.

So soon, the pictures of this mural are all that will remain. I'm slightly jealous that I don't get to be there to help paint over this, but I keep telling myself I had a part in getting the ball rolling and fighting for the removal of this for the past 4 years. Sure, it is cool in a strange way, but for a small room it is overwhelming and you always feel as though you're being watched by the spirits in the trees.
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2 Comments:

That mural is totally awesome! I'm kind of sad that it was painted over but yeah, it doesn't make any sense as to why it would be in a church anyway. What a strange collection of stories to tell in image form. Whoever did it was really talented, too bad they didn't do, oh I don't know, a Bible story or something... you know, since it is a church. Strange. In the sense that this is a room in a church and was freaking people out, I'm glad it's finally gone. Hopefully more symbolism that is more edifying for the body of Christ will find it's place in that room now. Way to go Laura for being a part of getting that out of there!

By Blogger Jessica, at 7:27 AM  

Wow! The art did need preservation, but here in your blog and not on the walls there. Great post.

By Blogger Kel aka Daddyo, at 7:44 AM  

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