Unveiling the Pear Tree Mural

by CIRE Equity /
March 6, 2024
large brightly colored painting on the side of a building of a woman picking a pear

In 2023, driven by the City of Ukiah’s Fifty in Five campaign, CIRE took a proactive step to support our mission of integrating public art within community spaces by commissioning a mural at Pear Tree Center in Ukiah, CA. The next time you drive past Pear Tree Center on Perkins Street, slow down and check out their new mural — live, in color, and perfect for a selfie or full-on photoshoot — on the south-facing wall of Lucky Supermarket.

It’s now a completed work of art that was done by award-winning artist Anthony Ortega. Ortega, a Reno-based tattoo artist and well-accomplished muralist, started doing graffiti around the age of 13, and like many street artists, he began his journey by artistically using spray paint. His unique interpretation inspired by fruit crate labels of the 1920s was his initial inspiration for the mural.

CIRE Equity sponsors this project, as we are the owner and manager of Pear Tree Center. The project made sense since the team at CIRE is very passionate about integrating public art into our properties whenever possible, as it creates a sense of place within the community. We deeply value community engagement and, over the years, have been an active member of the Greater Ukiah Business and Tourism Alliance and an ongoing sponsor of numerous community events, including Sundays in the Park, PumpkinFest, and Ukiah on Ice.

CIRE has been regularly involved in supporting Ukiah and Mendocino County’s thriving arts community. In 2020, we partnered with local artist Lauren Sinnott to replicate her Ukiah Valley Conference Center mural depicting the history of Ukiah on light pole banners throughout the center, and in 2021, we supported the Deep Valley Arts Collective in their endeavor to launch Medium Gallery. CIRE plans to continue supporting public art initiatives not only in Ukiah, but throughout our entire portfolio.

Having had several of collaborative partnerships with the city over the years and specifically inspired by the Fifty in Five Campaign, which is an informal initiative of the Community Services Department that plans to put up 50 works of art throughout the community in the next five years. We plan to continue being part of that initiative since our team formed a committee to identify the best locations to integrate public art in Ukiah and across many of our other properties.

How the vision came to life

After the initial site walk, the decision was obvious — the Lucky Supermarket wall was the best place for the mural to reside. Its vast size, 3,175 square feet, facing Perkins, also the gateway to downtown Ukiah, offers maximum visibility, immediately establishing a sense of place and an opportunity to highlight the area and growing shopping center.

It was also very advantageous that the management at Lucky was excited and in agreement with the vision and only requested that the creative tie-in to their business be an interpretation of Ukiah’s history and its roots in agriculture, specifically the pear orchards. It evolved towards using a fruit crate label of the 1920s as an artistic theme.

After reaching out to multiple artists and reviewing numerous submissions, the Pear Tree Center’s team decided on Ortega based on his design concept – a mural featuring a woman with a pear in hand against a backdrop of valley and mountains – which perfectly aligned with the creative parameters and goals established by the team. With the Lucky Supermarket wall as his canvas, Ortega uses the bricks, the vents, and the light fixtures as a grid system to line up the painting. His original digital design was created on his iPad, and he projected the image onto the wall to bring his vision to life!

Visit the Ukiah Daily Journal to learn more about Pear Tree Center, the artistic Ukiah community, and Ortega’s vision for this beautiful mural.


Pear Tree / Ukiah, CA

Property Type: Retail

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