Bright mural evokes joy and grace for commuters

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Dr. Jeff Murray and Hollye Davidson are pictured with their furry friends in front of the Koi Mural facing SW 85 Ave.

While driving on the S. Dixie Highway (US1) on a typical daily commute, you may notice an eye-catching Koi mural on the exterior walls of Doc’s Exotic Aquatics located at 12955 SW 85 Ave. Rd. in the Falls area.

The art is the work of world-renowned artist and South Florida resident Hollye Davidson, who created the 73-foot by 15-foot light-up mural.

Koi fish are known around the world for their elegance and expressive manner – reasons why Davidson selected the three descendants of the carp family for the mural she designed at Doc’s Exotic Aquatics. And she anticipates it to be the first of many.

Davidson has a strong sense of color and expressionism. His work has graced a variety of museums, galleries and public spaces for years. But lately, she has set her sights on much larger scales where she is able to bring a touch of artistry to the public eye.

Davidson was the artistic assistant to Eugine Massin, a well-known artist in Miami, and for many years worked alongside great artists who inspired her. His works have been exhibited in galleries, cultural centers and art fairs in the United States and abroad, including Galerie Langer in Berlin, Germany; Lowe’s Museum of Art in Coral Gables; Coconut Grove Gallery and Mayfair Gallery in Coconut Grove, and Lemon Sky Gallery in Miami.

Dr. Jeff Murray, owner of Doc’s Exotic Aquatics and Davidson’s friend since kindergarten, has kept in touch with her over the years. Known as the “doctor of the pond”, Murray once contacted Davidson and expressed a desire to do a mural for the shop, asking if she would be interested in the project.

He was thrilled when she replied that she would like to do the mural. Davidson loves color but has a greater interest in being able to evoke a feeling in a person when they emotionally connect with their work. She strives to bring warmth and joy through her art. Between the design, the selection of colors that resonate with meaning, the sketches and the graphics – she completed the detailed mural in a week. However, the preparation was immensely thought out and took almost five months in total to be the masterpiece we see today. Although many people may be overwhelmed, it is only natural for Davidson to work on such a large canvas as many of his canvases are up to eight feet tall. Davidson can work small but prefers to work big.

She allows herself to see beyond the surface of the image. In completing the mural, Davidson wanted viewers to feel the fish jumping towards them.
“If a piece takes you somewhere else, you can touch so many people. With people being so busy these days, it’s a wonderful thing when they can appreciate the art that crosses their path,” Davidson said. “With a mural, I am able to bring my art into the path of people.”

She remembers drawing a piece of art when she was 5 years old and proudly sharing her work with her family. While sketching the Koi mural, she found inspiration trying to understand what it could be like to move through water and the intricacies of being a fish.

“The koi fish has always been an international sign of hope, beauty and grace,” she said.
She is totally on board with protecting the environment and our oceans.
“Since drawing these fish, I have a newfound respect for the ocean and water, as well as the movement of fish and their life.”

Davidson has a new mural in the mix, soon to be featured in the heart of Coral Gables. Although she only shared her vision for the next masterpiece, there is one takeaway. Now people will enjoy taking the stairwell to their workspace.

More work can be found on her website at www.hollyedavidson.com.


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