DCCVB Director Debbie Armstrong recently sat down with Rick Mamoser , co-owner of Prairie State Winery with his wife, Maria, to discuss their newly commissioned mural that graces the side of their building at 222 W. Main St. in downtown Genoa.
The beautiful new piece of public art started to unfold months ago, when Mamoser was talking to friends at Resource Bank about his mural idea. They referred him to Eulojio Ortega, a muralist from Sandwich they had commissioned for Resource Bank’s Hampshire and Somonauk branches.
Mamoser studied Ortega’s work at his website – chicagomuralist.com – and fell in love with it. He met with Ortega and came away convinced he was the right artist for their mural. Marla Shega, the designer of many labels for Prairie State Winery, including all the Prairie State labels that are unveiled each year at Nouveau Wine Weekend in Galena, came up with the concept that Ortega brought to life.
Nouveau is the French-inspired tradition of previewing the first samplings from the fall harvest. This year, Prairie State Winery will showcase wines in Galena on Nov. 20 and 21 as usual, but will also hold its own event Thursday, Nov. 19, in Genoa. Nouveau Toast & Breakfast will ring in the arrival of the first vintage of the season with wine enthusiasts getting to sample the new 2015 vintage and enjoy complimentary breakfast quiches. Each year, 20 posters with the Prairie State Nouveau label are produced and signed by the artist for collectors. Shega’s work can be viewed at her website – marlaspalette.com.
Take a trip to Genoa and let your eyes drink it all in. Remember to go inside and sample the wine produced from Illinois grapes by loving hands. This mural may have been created in 10 working days but the vision behind it represents the love and nurturing of a local business that started 17 years ago.
DeKalb County is fortunate to have local artisans crafting and producing quality wines, micro-brews, whiskey and vodka for their neighbors and visitors to enjoy. Here’s a toast to all the hard-working people who are part of the tourism landscape in DeKalb County.