Artist Profile: Rainbow Byson
Meet Rainbow Byson. She is a fine artist specializing in a variety of mediums, including public street art. We asked Rainbow a couple of questions about her own artistic style and where she sees art headed in Downtown Grand Junction.
Q: Why is public art important for the community?
A: Public art creates another visual dimension in a space; it changes and livens an environment. An art installation makes an ordinary wall or object that much more aesthetically pleasing. A wall or traffic signal box that was never noticed before, all of a sudden, with some art on it, becomes noticed. Public art takes a grey/dull space and beautifies it.
Q: Why is public art important to you?
A: To me public art is important because it is a freedom of expression; it’s a form of communication through imagery. Street/public art is also very exciting to create. Art just doesn’t belong in a museum or in someone’s private collection. I appreciate art in the streets so more people are able to observe art without a cost.
Q: How did you get involved in murals / wheat paste / graffiti? Anything about those mediums you particularly enjoy?
A: Murals and street art are the new art movement. I became involved more than nine years ago when I first learned about guerilla art. I was doing paintings on canvases (which I still do), then I learned that people around the world were putting their art in all forms on the streets for everyone to see, whether it was legal or not.
From giant murals, stenciled spray paint designs, wheat paste photo post ups, or knitted street wraps, it inspired me that art could not just be in a gallery but anywhere. There is something about the temporary aspect that makes it more beautiful. It is ever evolving and ever changing.
I love painting murals, as they are more time intensive and require more planning. Wheat paste post ups I particularly enjoy, coming from a photography background. Wheat pasting is a way to get big art done fast. I really enjoy the process of creating street art and the camaraderie of it all.
Q: What’s your next big project?
A: Currently nothing is in the works. However, I am always putting new art on the pylons down by the river usually under the 5th street bridge. I am always planning and marketing for new projects.
Q: What’s most exciting to you about the art community in Grand Junction?
A: The Grand Junction art community has had a long history of sculpture on Main Street. It’s exciting that now it is expanding to more murals and painting installations, and more paid projects are available. It is thrilling that downtown Grand Junction is a creative arts district and is encouraging the arts.
Q: How can people stay in touch / follow you?
A: I have a Facebook art page and Instagram account under my name Rainbow Byson. I also have a youtube channel and been working towards a website. My email
Q: Where can people see your work? List of public art pieces.
A: One of my favorite public art projects I created was the Electric Aquarium on a traffic signal box on the corner of 5th and Main St. I worked with the dimensions of the box to create an illusion of a fish tank viewed from all sides.
I have two flowers I painted in the breezeway between Main St. and the parking garage. One is a large columbine flower. The other is accented with buzzing stenciled bees.
A giant wheat pasted Frida Kahlo under the Broadway bridge by the Redlands and River. And various other art under the 5th street bridge including a Pancho Villa wheat paste and Chief Ouray and Chipeta, and stenciled monarch butterflies
I organized a group of teens to design and create a mural on the Youth Zone building at 413 9th Street in Rifle, Colorado.
Being temporarily street art, some of my other projects are no longer available but included; A jelly fish mural on the back side of Get Air at the Silo; a pow wow themed native American mural and wheat paste at Heritage Park in Fruita; A giant cat drinking river water under the 5th street bridge; A Super Mario Brother mural at Westlake Skate park; several other murals at Westlake Skate park.