The university community is invited to collaboratively paint a mural from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. on September 1 in the green space by the Nebraska Union.
Ordered by the Entrepreneurship Center in the College of Business, the mural will be the first venture of a new startup called The PALETTE Project, led by the founder, CEO and senior management Erika Casarin.
Designed as a large paint-by-number activity, the mural allows participants to leave their mark on the university. Music and snacks are also included, and students will receive t-shirts while supplies last.
“Not only does the experience break down barriers and bring people together, but PALETTE The project also beautifies the communities where we reside, ”said Casarin, from Lincoln. “The mission of PALETTE is to deepen partnerships between non-profit, for-profit organizations and the community at large through collaborative mural painting. I wanted to create an experience for our university students, allowing them to connect in a meaningful way, and this event gives them a place to mingle and create fond memories while creating unique art.
The completed mural will be installed at the Center for Entrepreneurship, Room 315 at Howard L. Hawks Hall, in mid-September.
“When I had the idea of PALETTEI didn’t know where to start, so I made a consultation appointment with the Center for Entrepreneurship, ”Casarin said. “I met the staff who took the time to listen to my idea and asked me questions. We found the flaws in the model and developed strategies to compensate for them. They guided me through the challenges and successes of the early stages of the business.
Casarin took part in the centre’s New Venture competition with his business plan and spoke to members of Startups ONE, a student-run organization that operates out of the center. Then she launched the idea of PALETTEThe first draft of the college’s Kathy Farrell, James Jr. and Susan Stuart Dean, and Sam Nelson, center director and associate professor of management practice.
“His presentation was well designed and focused on a common project for the C4ENelson said. “She explained how this mural was more than just a piece of art – it was a way for us to share the history of entrepreneurship in Nebraska and its endless possibilities. Dean Farrell and I thought it seemed fitting that the first company designed by students for The PALETTE The project would be installed in the Center for Entrepreneurship.
Casarin contacted Javier Rivera, an art graduate from Omaha, to build the large canvases to be painted at the event. She also had her high school friend Avry Victor, a junior art student from Lincoln, to create the graphic design for the mural, which was later named “Lift Off.”
“The wall design shows six people from space assembling a rocket in mid-flight,” Casarin said. “These six people represent the core values of Startups ONE, the core values of our community that influence the way we interact with each other. Through these principles, we build stronger bonds and achieve individual and collective success. Entrepreneurship is fast-paced and invigorating – hence the inclusion of the rocket, which helps convey a limitless mindset. It is imperative to note that each individual has a role to play in the making of the rocket, stressing the importance of collaboration and teamwork.
Additionally, Casarin teamed up with another high school friend who worked as a videographer at Digital Sky. Through this connection, she worked with the company’s creative team to capture videos and photos at future wall events and to build social media around the project and event. The Digital Sky team includes three Nebraska alumni: Aaron Hahn, ’14, COO and strategic director; Mackenzie White, ’19, creative producer; and Ann Milroy, ’20, Creative Director.
Casarin encouraged all students to attend the event and paint the mural so that they can make their mark at the university.
“We want this event to be a place where students can mingle and create great memories while creating this unique work of art,” she said. “There is a sense of permanence, as the canvas will be hung at the Center for Entrepreneurship for years to come, and I want every student who helped paint to remember the impact it had in Nebraska.”