16 | One Wish

Mural  |  Marissa Tawney Thaler  |  Lansing, MI

About This Installation

For the past few years, I have been using origami inspired imagery in my artwork- the angles and simplicity have always drawn me in. I attribute this attraction to elementary school, when I was deeply influenced by the story of Sodako Sasaki and her fight against Leukemia resulting from the radiation she sustained after surviving the Atomic bomb attack in Hiroshima. According to ancient Japanese legend, the gods will reward any person who folds 1000 paper cranes (senbazuru) with one wish. And so, Sodako set about the task, folding as many cranes as she could until her strength failed. After her death, as the story goes, her classmates folded the remaining few hundred in her honor. During my time as an elementary art teacher, I saw that same resilient spirit again and again, the urge to do right and persevere.

Since then, senbazuru has become a symbol of peace and recovery- something acutely applicable today. My hope is for viewers to look on this colorful display and take heart, focus on healing, and send out a wish for peace.

Artist Bio

"I'm Marissa, and I work as an illustrator in Lansing, MI. I hold a BFA from Kendall College of Art and Design, where I studied Art Education and Illustration. After college, I worked as an elementary art teacher, using school breaks to cultivate my personal work.

In the fall of 2018, I left teaching to pursue a career as a freelance illustrator. Since then, I've developed the origami-inspired series, “Drawing Folded Paper,” and illustrated two children’s books, Get that GRIT! and The Itchy Secret. I have a sunny little studio above a plant shop, where I love to start a hundred projects and maybe finish a few.

My work, often narrative in nature, uses primarily drawing media to achieve a 'bittersweet aesthetic'. I aim to find the lighthearted side of struggles and moments of connection in everyday happenings."

This is an Artist Talk featured artist

Featured Artist Talk

Find On The Trail - Site 16

Under the Shiawassee Bridge - the East Side of the Grand River

The Shiawassee Bridge on the East side of the river was one of ArtPath's original locations. A mural from 2018, the inaugural year of this project still resides on the North wall. This location will house three murals.

This location is made possible in part by generous contributions from:
Michelle Massey & Joe Findlater

ArtPath is generously supported by our title sponsors The Rathbun Insurance and Auto-Owners Insurance. With additional support by:

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Michigan Economic Development Corporation & Patronicity