Union HS art student Mary Jenkins was among painters of Dysart’s Gorge on Tuesday.

Kaylie Bowers paints part of the Gorge.

A dozen or so Union High School art students joined teacher Joleen Darnall Poyner in helping Dysart residents paint what could be Iowa’s very first municipal anamorphic illusion — The Gorge on Main Street.

The painting, which is designed to give the appearance of standing over a deep canyon, is taking shape on Main Street. It’s part of the preparation for the city’s Sesquicentennial, which takes place in 2023. Dysart officially became a town just across the Benton County line in 1873.

Nearly a dozen different colors of paint are involved. Art students used sidewalk chalk to create the outline, after an attempt to use a construction chalk line proved unsuccessful. It took two rounds of chalking to create the outline, said one student.

Union students said they enjoyed participating in the project, being outside painting with their friends and classmates. The biggest challenge, they said: Running out of the particular color of paint they had been using.

While The Gorge is getting all the media attention this week, the project also includes two smaller painting projects: A koi pond and a checkerboard-theme walkway.

See the original blog about the project HERE.

See more photos HERE.