Downtown Kinston Mural Program

The City of Kinston received funding from the NEA Our Town program to support the creation of a Downtown Kinston Mural Program in which the City will commission up to ten original outdoor public murals, to be completed by August 2020. The mural locations will be scattered throughout downtown, with the aim of enhancing connectivity between cultural and economic assets in Kinston’s city center.

Picture1The creation of the murals will coincide with a City-led $3.2 million downtown streetscape improvement project (to include new street trees, sidewalks, crosswalks, parking street lights, and traffic patterns).

Here are our goals for the Mural Program:

  • Use creative placemaking efforts as a way to create dialogue around social justice issues and community concerns, and to bring together our diverse citizenry through community-based, grassroots collaboration.
  • Reveal the vibrancy of Kinston through the cultural experiences that promote history, the arts and regional authenticity that makes this city special.
  • Revitalize downtown, recreating the “Magic Mile,” as a cultural and shopping experience.
  • Promote Kinston as a destination for tourists and for creative people to live, work and sell their wares.
  • Provide creative growth and economic opportunities for local and regional artists.

Selection Committee

A Selection Committee has been formed to provide oversight of the Mural Program. The Selection Committee has a number of responsibilities, including: 1) refining the program’s goals, 2) curating mural locations, 3) selecting artists based on qualifications and alignment with program goals, and 4) the approval of concepts.

Mural Locations – Calling Downtown Property Owners

The City is in the process of selecting and securing permissions for the specific locations of the outdoor murals. You may view and download the Owner Permission form here. This form provides more information on the roles and responsibilities of the City and the property owner as it relates to the mural program.

If you own a downtown property and are interested in putting your property forward for consideration by the Selection Committee, please send an email to with the following information: your name, property address, and description of the proposed mural location.



Artist Selection – RFQ to be released in Fall 2019

The City, with recommendations from the Selection Committee, expects to select up to ten artists for up to ten murals. Artists and artist teams are welcome to express interest in completing one mural and/or a series of murals via a competitive application process. 

A Request for Qualifications (RFQ) is in the works and will be released in Fall 2019. This will be a qualifications-based selection process; artists will develop concepts after they are selected based on their past experience, artistry, alignment with the program’s goals, and demonstrated interest.

The City is especially interested in receiving applications from artists with experience and interest in collaborative, community-based mural projects that build social capital, represent diversity, and develop a sense of communal ownership over public spaces.


Please visit this page again in the future for regular updates. If you would like to receive updates by email, please click here to provide your contact information.