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Spotlight on River Basin muralist Shari Shifrin


Mural #48 at the river basin next to Luminary Hotel is a painting of a shrimp boat moored at the balustrade along the Caloosahatchee River circa 1949, which was a common sight prior to the discovery of “pink gold” in the waters off Fort Myers Beach around that time. It was painted by Shari Shifrin, who not only serves as the Executive Director of the Fort Myers Mural Society, but who played an instrumental role in orchestrating the River Basin Mural Project and overseeing the installation of the murals contained in the City’s walkable outdoor art and history museum.

Shari grew up in the NYC area. Her mom was heavily connected to the arts & entertainment industry, so Shari and her sisters were exposed to diverse cultural influences growing up.

Shifrin graduated with a BFA from the School for American Craftsmen and a BS in Textiles from Rochester Institute of Technology. She moved to Florida in 1987. Since then, she has owned and operated two different textile printing companies, including, currently, Grand Illusion Creative.

Over the course of her career, Shari has also served as Art Director @ Outlaw Graphics and graphic editor @ Hot Rods n Hogs Magazine.

“My passion for public art encouraged me to form the non-profit Fort Myers Mural Society in 2015 to use my skills to help local artists paint murals and contribute to the public art scene,” says Shari. “As director of the Fort Myers Mural Society  I built an App that has the capability to map all the public art and places of art interests all over the world.”

Shari currently sits on the National Board of Decorators, is a member of Florida Association of Public Art Professionals, and is a member of the International Decorative Artisans League.

“On a personal note, I’m happily married with 4 grown kids and 3 grandchildren,” Shari adds. “I like living in the country with my dogs and horses, riding motorcycles and have been a Girl Scout for over 50 years.”

July 31, 2023.

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