Is Delight Legit?

By Morgan Bricca June 29, 2018

I recently painted my driveway.

mural image

I titled the driveway art “Friday Happy Hour”. I was in the middle of a well deserved sprawl on the couch one Friday afternoon when I decided to watch a TED talk a friend had forwarded to me, Where Joy Hides and How to Find It. I was so inspired by what I learned that I peeled myself off the couch and started mixing paints. I don’t recommend watching this video if you are susceptible to spontaneous bouts of rearranging furniture or painting your walls bright colors. Unfortunately, I am high risk in both categories. However, ever since my driveway had its makeover, coming home feels…happier. When I get out of the car, I never know what color I might land on…delight.

I am probably not the first artist to feel this way, but I have insecurities around my art and creative process. Even though I love to make art that just feels good to look at, somehow that doesn’t seem like a legitimate enough reason to make art. Not serious/political/intellectual “enough”. With those “enough” obstacles, how can delight carry a piece through to “worthiness”?

I was recently offered an amazing 160-foot long blank canvas, a mural project for the City of San Jose. At the Arts Commission meeting where I was to present my final design, I listened to two other artists share their designs for projects they had been awarded. Both artists led with the worthiness of their art as it related to a political idea for one, and intellectual process for the other. I was in awe of the caliber of both the artists and their art. When it was my turn to pitch my idea, I had the intense urge to apologize for my design; it’s rainbow color palette and imagery that included lots of butterflies and flowers. I felt certain the community that had selected me as the artist would love it, but certainly not the community of imaginary art critics that live in my head. I wanted to present myself as a serious artist but perhaps I had veered off course in creating a design that was crafted simply to be beautiful.

In the middle of my stammering and internal withering, an individual that had attended one of the neighborhood input meetings for the mural that the city had organized raised his hand. The man said that he felt that their community had been listened to by the artist, and the design very much reflected the themes that the community wanted to see in the artwork. I have never felt more gratitude for an unsolicited testimonial. After he spoke I regained confidence in my process as a collaborative artist, and I remembered my why. The concept was subsequently approved by the city.

Here is a sneak preview of the mural to come.

mural image

The local community hopes to install a children’s park in front of the mural. Well meaning adults will argue in favor of the park because kids need a safe place to play, because physical exercise and vitamin D is good for their health, and because research supports the importance of play for brain development and social skills. But the kids? They are going to go play at the park because joy feels good. Sometimes, as adults, we forget that joy and delight might be a perfectly good reason to do something.

With love,

Morgan signature

 

Morgan Bricca

Morgan Bricca

Morgan Bricca is a mural artist living and working in the San Francisco Bay Area. Her clients run the gamut from professional creatives, including architects and designers to building owners, school administrators and community advocates. When she is not making art, Morgan enjoys sipping boba tea with her kids and taking naps on the couch.

WHAT CLIENTS ARE SAYING

Our entire staff enthusiastically appreciates the artistic transformation of our clinic. The kids here for medical services LOVE the murals as well. One of our young patients returned from emergency psychiatric services for a self-harm issue and when she came into our office she had a huge smile upon seeing the mural. It is amazing to all of us how immediately a depressed patient responded to the mural art.

It has been a pleasure to work with you. We love both your work and the positive environment and spirit you have instilled in our kids.  Once again Morgan, thank you so very much from the bottom of my heart.

Warm regards,

Chia-Chen Lee
Juvenile Hall Medical Clinic Pediatrics

Review for Juvenile Hall Mural Project by Chia-Chen Lee

Morgan blew it out of the water.  As a general contractor, I would say my decision to hire Morgan for this mural is one of the best decisions I have made in terms of impact of my work.  Every kid will remember this mural as long as he or she shall live. Watching a child see the mural for the first time is an experience words can’t describe. It’s mesmerizing to them. Adults too, for that matter. It’s a show stopper.  So much better than I could have ever imagined.

I would go out of my very busy way to recommend Ms. Morgan Bricca on every possible level, with no hesitation. Please feel free to call me if you are considering hiring Morgan but can’t quite take the leap. I will be glad to push you in.

Chris Carver
Aquatic Management Group
Raleigh, North Carolina

Mural artist review by Chris Carver

Morgan offers a unique collaborative approach with her clients. On our project, she struck the perfect balance; she listened to our ideas and feedback but very much maintained her role as the creative expert, making us feel comfortable the entire time.

I would absolutely recommend Morgan with no hesitation. With all that she has done, she is going to find the right approach for just about any client.

Jonathan Meyer
VP, Marketing and Community Relations
San Mateo Credit Union

Mural painter review by Jonathan Meyer

We absolutely love our mural! I anticipated that it would add beauty and a much-needed “nature element” onto our campus, I never could have imagined what a huge impact this would have on our school. I have seen countless children, parents, and teachers walk by in awe, totally captivated. Not only does it make our campus a brighter, more beautiful place to learn and play, it reminds our entire community of the tremendous importance of art. This is a gift beyond measure, especially in tech-obsessed silicon valley. Once again, you have exceeded my (already high) expectations!

You are so fun, inspiring and professional to work with and your projects in our kinder yard and now this mural have been my most satisfying collaborations on PTA.

Warmly,

Christy Flahavan
PTA President
Springer Elementary School

Mural Artist Review for Springer Elementary School by Christy Flahavan

The real value and pleasure of working with Morgan was that we connected with her. She was very personable, very sincere, very collaborative, but not one to sit back and let us lead it in a wrong direction. We trusted her completely from the past work she had done for us, and told her, “here is a wall, do something with it – surprise us.” It’s like dealing with a friend.

The murals she has created for us make our home more intimate, warm, and personal. I was surprised at how quickly she worked, how easily it got done, and how watching the process was enlightening. It just flowed; it was like watching a very large masterpiece being created before our very eyes. It was especially interesting when she got into the tonality and the tints. For us, it turned out better than we could have expected. I absolutely recommend her without a doubt.

Mural Painter Review by Sandy Bland

Morgan, the mural you created for our building has been a major attraction for both locals and visitors in Downtown Napa. The transformation of an eye sore, to a work of art, has been nothing short of amazing. I feel a little guilty receiving so many compliments for your work, however that doesn’t stop me from stealing part of your credit. Your attention to detail and sensitivity, bringing the Wappo tribe into the process, unified Napa’s residents with its history. This public recognition of the Wappo Indians is long overdue, reminding us all of a different time in the Napa Valley when nature and people could live harmoniously.

Every day, as I watch children and adults transported to an earlier time in the Napa Valley, I appreciate your ability to be the vehicle for their journey. I hope soon you will return to sprinkle some more fairy dust on another wall, so I can watch your magic talented creations at work.

Thank You,
Michael L Holcomb

Mural Artist Review by Michael L Holcomb

Hi Morgan,

We had an end of the school year party at our house and everyone raved about your mural. I see your name and date, 2012, on it and can’t believe it was 4 years ago.

Just wanted you to know it brings me joy every day.

Warmest,
Josh Weinstock

Mural Artist Review by Josh Weinstock

I have worked with Morgan on five mural projects at our house over the past six years. I love her work and she is a pleasure to work with. Once you see how transformed your space is by the first mural, it is easy to start seeing other rooms that could benefit from a “Morgan”.

Susan Wojicki
CEO, YouTube

Mural Painter Review by Susan Wojicki

Morgan’s work is exquisite. She loves what she does, works extremely fast, and is a true pleasure to work with.

David DaPonte
Architect, HKS

Mural Painter Review by David DaPonte

Without fail, anytime someone comes to our house who hasn’t seen the painting, they comment on it and how much they like it.

Adam King
Director, Intel Corporation

 

Mural Painter Review by Adam King