the artists wall 

December 22, 2023

From a blank wall to a wild mural at Binky Lee Preserve 

A hand giving a thumbs down sign in front of a blank wall in the parking lot at Binky Lee Preserve

Sienna Proetto

The cement wall in the parking lot at Binky Lee Preserve was unremarkable, just something visitors passed by before getting to the trail. As the years went by, the habitat at Binky Lee Preserve behind the wall thrived. Trees were planted and grew tall, meadows were seeded and nurtured, and wildlife found food and shelter there.  

And still that wall was blank. For some, the wall was nothing special. For Sienna Proetto, it was a canvas. 

Sienna is an artist with a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Kutztown University. As a painter, she has created landscapes and painted murals on interior spaces. After taking a break from her work for her family, she was looking for a place to start fresh. The wall became that place.  

“I am exploring different places to begin again and at the same time trying to return to what brings me joy. Embracing the natural and rejecting consumerism are where I feel at home.” 

Sienna Proetto stand on a bucket to paint a mural at Binky Lee Preserve

Photo: Darin Groff

In October, as the leaves turned, shapes formed on the wall. Green hearts turned into lush leaves, and outlines became sketches of plants and animals. Sometimes she stood on a grey bucket, sometimes she painted with her baby on her back. All through autumn Sienna painted, mixing custom colors as the leaves fell from the trees.  

In November, the outlines were filled in to become striking paintings of wildlife, blooming wildflowers, and a verdant green to hold it all together. Both educational and artistic, Sienna’s mural includes plant and animal species’ names on it. The creatures are not in proportion to each other, but to the wall itself. 

Sienna carries a baby in a carrier on her back while standing in front of her unfinished mural of plants and animals.

Photo: Darin Groff

Sienna’s inspiration was the plants and animals that might not be obvious in our day-to-day lives. “We tend to get so comfortable in our modern lives that we forget to care for our own environment, which is detrimental to not only us, but all the living things around us. My goal for this mural was to highlight some of the plants and animals, common and uncommon, that call our home their home as well.” 

Today, the wall is now as vibrant as the landscape behind it. This mural stands like a movie trailer for Binky Lee Preserve, showing the plants and animals visitors might see while exploring the trails.

“I hope that the mural beautifies the small portion of the preserve that is man made and utilitarian. I hope it welcomes visitors to the preserve with color and life, especially in the winter months when those things are harder to find. I hope people see the care and love that surrounds Binky Lee Preserve.” 

With deepest gratitude to Sienna Proetto, Libby Welsman, and Dante Proetto for volunteering their time and talents to create this mural for Binky Lee Preserve. Check out sienna.proetto on Instagram to see more of her beautiful photos and to thank her for her inspiring gift.  

A hand giving a thumbs up sign in front of a painted outdoor mural in the parking lot at Binky Lee Preserve

Sienna Proetto

Photos of the mural as a work in progress and the final result.