GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — His art is on display across the world, and now Grand Rapids will forever bear the mark of the artist known as Royyal Dog.
“This has taken about three weeks. He works fast,” said Rebecca Reid.
Reid is the Project Coordinator for this larger-than-life mural depicting a beautiful woman in a Korean hanbok dress. Reid’s boss wanted to find a way to contribute something special to the community.
“The owner of Hopson Flats, Roger Thornberg, has this beautiful canvas, this big wall,” said Reid.
Royyal Dog, whose real name is Chris Chanyang Shim, was commissioned for the piece. He started work during May, which is Asian American Heritage month.
The piece also celebrates the recent Sister Cities International Agreement between Grand Rapids and Gangnam-gu District, South Korea.
The Hopson Flats apartment building is located right across the street from Founders Brewing, a popular draw for craft beer enthusiasts. It’s now a place very much appreciated by the artist.
“He’s over at Founders all the time. He loves their BLT sandwich,” said Reid.
Royyal Dog and his family, who have been staying in Grand Rapids with him while he works, have also enjoyed Meijer Gardens. The family made a trip to Lansing to see another one of his murals — the first time his wife has seen the piece that depicts her.
Done entirely in spray paint, Royyal Dog starts with a sketch and cherry picker.
“And then he goes in with his spray paint and he’s looking at a picture on his phone while he’s spray painting, which is just crazy,” described Reid.
The lifelike mural will be officially unveiled during a curtain drop on Friday at 4 o’clock. Music and a Founders Beer tent will also be part of the celebration.