New mural featuring automotive evolution completed at Brother’s Garage

CONTRIBUTED PHOTO Artists Melynda McCord and Landaca Czerniewski pose in front of their newly completed mural on the side of the Brother’s Garage building. The mural features silhouettes of cars throughout history against a colorful sunset backdrop.

Murals and Marshalltown are two words that have become closely intertwined in recent years, and while most of these art pieces have been helped along through the work of the Marshall County Arts and Culture Alliance, an independent mural was completed at Brother’s Garage just last week.

The mural, titled “The Future is Here and Now,” was created by artists Melynda McCord and Landaca Czerniewski — who previously completed the mural of Van Gogh’s “Starry Night” at the downtown Great Western Bank (now First Interstate Bank) last October — and it was commissioned by the Brother’s Garage auto shop.

McCord said several Brother’s Garage associates saw her and Czerniewski working on “Starry Night” last October and mentioned that they would be interested in working with them on their new building at 411 S. Ninth St. McCord and Czerniewski met with them last fall, but they didn’t start right away as employees settled in at the new location.

Almost a year later, the two artists started painting, and after three weeks of hard work, it was completed on Aug. 23. The mural features a tri-colored background, resembling a sunset, and then the evolution of cars is showcased using silhouettes.

It starts with a horse on the far-left side of the building, and several different types of cars throughout history are shown along the length of the building. The last two silhouettes are of a flying car and a spaceship, representing the future of automotive transportation. In addition to the vehicles, other details like a black cat and two stenciled Brother’s Garage logos are on display.

The mural on the side of Brother’s Garage, located at 411 S. Ninth St., spans the entire length of the building. Starting with a horse, it shows the evolution of automotive transportation through the years, ending with a flying car and a spaceship as future predictions. The design was completed by artists Melynda McCord and Landaca Czerniewski.

The two artists came up with the concept for the mural on their own, and Brother’s Garage readily accepted their mock up.

“What our representation of this artwork is, without (describing) it in words, is that the future of cars is here and now at Brother’s Garage,” McCord said. “I’ve lived in Marshalltown for over 30 years, and they’re all the same mechanics. These are young guys, they’re brothers, I don’t know, it’s just new blood in town.”

Completing the mural was exciting for McCord, especially because of the brothers’ passion for their city.

“The brothers made it very clear this mural is for the community, not for their personal gain,” McCord said. “We live in a great, strong community.”

The “Starry Night” mural was the first mural that McCord and Czerniewski completed, and on top of learning the best techniques for the mural, they were also battling cold temperatures and rain. This time around, McCord said it was much easier. Though they were more prepared, the building is quite a large canvas, which was challenging at times.

The mural starts and ends with the Brother’s Garage logo, to show that the future of cars is at Brother’s Garage.

“With such a long and wide canvas we had to work with, sometimes you can’t see the whole picture in front of you,” McCord said.

Challenges aside, they found the entire community to be very supportive. The building is bordered by a bike path, and McCord said bikers passing by were both enthusiastic and encouraging as they worked on the mural.

Now that it is complete, the public is welcome to stop by and enjoy the newest addition to Marshalltown’s art repertoire. To view the mural, walk down the bike trail towards the Brother’s Garage building as it is not fully visible from Ninth Street.

McCord said that a few years down the line, it’s possible that they will cover the mural and create something completely new, but for the foreseeable future, “The Future is Here and Now” will be on display at Brother’s Garage.


Contact Susanna Meyer at 641-753-6611 or



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