Neko Bus Stop

While I was in Ithaca I wanted to connect with a group of artists and do some collaborative street art projects together. This partially came through the Thriving Futures projects. Thriving Futures project was organized by Ithaca Murals for Cornell Cooperative Extension Tompkins County as the celebration of finalization of 12- year- long project Get Your GreenBack Tompkins. I applied to their call and was selected along with 14 other artists for what I would like to quote Caleb Thomas to be the process of „beautification“ of Ithaca. We were to paint 11 electrical boxes across Ithaca with one group working on a large mural on Cornell Cooperative Extension Tompkins County building. I got to paint an electric box on the crossroad of Dryden Rd, Ithaca Rd, Maple Ave, Oak Ave and Cornell St. The best part was- it was near my daughter’s school, Belle Sherman Elementary. This gave me inspiration for the project. I wanted to connect 3 primary schools across the world where my kids went to, Chitoze Elementary in Soshigaya (Tokyo, Japan), OŠ Kovačići in Sarajevo (BiH) and Belle Sherman in Ithaca (NY, USA). And the fastest way to connect those was to have Neko Bus (a cat bus) from My Neighbor Totoro. So I made a Neko Bus Stop. As homage to the local bus line, TCAT (there is cat in their abbreviation), I put a little bit of their color in it. There is a variety of characters from Ghibli movies waiting for the bus there. I hope some of them are your favorite.

Unfortunately, the project was running late thanks to the City of Ithaca, an angry taxpayer, very weird weather, crappy colors (stay away from Artist´s Loft brand), bad alignment of the stars and whatnots, but in the end it was a success. I didn´t get much chance to hang out with other artists. Everything was last minute and it was my final month in Ithaca, so I was also occupied by friends who wanted to say goodbyes. I did get a chance to meet some of them, and if I had had more time we might have ended up doing something together. I also met some really cool neighbors, genuine Ghibli lovers- Bill from Best Auto Repair and people cheering from their cars for me while I was sweating and trying not to lose my conscience on the high noon sun. I would like to give thanks to the guy who stopped to pass me a bottle of water. For this mural I hope it will last a little bit longer and that kids from Belle Sherman Primary would get to see it if they ever go by foot in that direction. For Caleb I have only one wish, keep that beautification going.

Technique: mural – acrylic on taxpayer´s electric box

Size: common US electric box size with a little bit of pole

Year: June 2023

Availability: Public mural



Paintings done in Japanese style. Mostly variations and fusions of famous Ukiyo-e prints, global pop culture & sakura.