PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Philadelphia’s newest mural is one soon-to-be-married couples are sure to love. It’s being installed this week inside the Register of Wills Marriage License Bureau at City Hall, just in time for Valentine’s Day.
When Madame Register Tracey L. Gordon took over the job about a year ago, she noticed the drab, beige walls of the Marriage License Bureau were anything but love-inducing.READ MORE: Philadelphia Students To Remain Virtual As Mediation Process Between School District, Teachers' Union On Phased Reopening Nearing End
“I was like, ‘No way!” she said.
The self-declared hopeless romantic and her staff reached out to Mural Arts Philadelphia with an idea for an in-office mural where couples could document the beginning of their marriage journey.
“Take a selfie and say, ‘Hey, we’re in Philadelphia, we’re in love and we just got married,’” Gordon said.
The project was entrusted to Mural Arts staff artist Nathaniel Lee, who had just three weeks to design, paint and install it. His vision was to weave together those iconic Philadelphia locations where people traditionally take wedding photos and put them all in one spot.READ MORE: Delaware County Company Develops 'The Hurricane,' Device Using UVC Technology To Kill Coronavirus
“I wanted to include not just the Art Museum itself, but the steps, because it was a lot more symbolic about marriage and the journey of marriage and how it’s not always easy,” he said.
Though Lee is still putting the finishing touches on it, that didn’t stop happy couples applying for marriage licenses from being the first to have their pictures taken with the “Marriage Mural.”
“It’s really nice. I’m looking forward to seeing my picture printed out,” future bride Chrisie Murkins said.
“It’ll be a good story for us for a while and it’ll always be special, thanks for making that happen for us,” said Jesse Kolos with his fiancé Alex Wilson.
Lee said he’s honored that moving forward his work will be immortalized in the photos of some of the 10,000 couples who come through the bureau each year.MORE NEWS: Fourth Bucks County Resident, Raechel Genco, Arrested For Alleged Role In Capitol Riot
“I get to ride the coattails of hopefully, one of the best days of somebody’s life, and have my artwork be a part of that, that’s the ultimate meaning,” he said.