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New money for new murals in Lynn

(Spenser Hasak)

LYNN — Beyond Walls, the art and lighting project that illuminated the city’s downtown last year, could gain $100,000 for next summer’s festival.

MassDevelopment, the state’s finance and development agency, and Patronicity, a Michigan-based crowdfunding platform that connects nonprofits with sponsors, have launched a campaign to raise cash for the second mural jubilee, slated for 2018.

“Our initiatives help to create a safe, colorful and vibrant downtown for the city,” said Al Wilson, executive director of Beyond Walls, in a statement. “Our 2018 mural festival will build on the great momentum of last year’s mural festival and our underpass and neon lighting installations.”

Last summer, the festival brought 23 artists from Lynn and around the world to leave their imprint on downtown buildings.

It created an economic boom when more than 5,000 visitors flocked to Lynn and spent money in local restaurants and businesses.

Under the terms of the campaign, if Beyond Walls reaches its crowdfunding goal of $50,000 by the end of May, the project will win a matching grant from MassDevelopment’s Commonwealth Places program. The organization has set up a crowdsourcing campaign where people can learn more about the project and donate to the cause.

Wilson said Beyond Walls plans to bring more giant works of art, mixed-media art installations, restoration of many of the city’s signs, and more programs to the urban core.

“The first Beyond Walls campaign transformed blank walls into vibrant works of art accessible to residents and visitors of all backgrounds, successfully shifting the conversation about Lynn’s future and changing perceptions of what is possible,” said Lauren Liss, MassDevelopment president and CEO, in a statement. “We look forward to seeing what the next chapter of Beyond Walls brings to Lynn.”

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