New mural in Seminole Heights offers 'hope' to still-healing neighborhood after murders

Artist Nuclear Sky painted heart on Francis House

For the longest time the EPIC Francis House in Seminole Heights never wanted to draw attention to itself. 

The HIV support center was extremely protective of its clientele.

But when a serial killer murdered four people in Seminole Heights, the Francis House wanted to embrace a neighborhood that has always embraced them.

So the center went bold and commissioned Tampa artist Skylar “Nuclear Sky” Suarez to paint the exterior of the Francis House in vibrant colors.

The piece of art Suarez created is a memorial to the victims. It is now a symbol of “hope” for the reeling community where neighbors can mourn or pray. 

“After everything Seminole Heights has been through we thought it was a great idea to give something back,” says EPIC Francis House’s Vicky Oliver. “Our neighbors have always been supportive of us.”

The mural is called “Rooted Bloom.” It took the 26-year-old USF graduate about twenty hours to complete. 

“They wanted something colorful, something with an underlying message of hope,” Suarez. “I want to bring as much life to the city as I can.”

For more on Skylar "Nuclear Sky" Suarez and her work in Seminole Heights, visit: www.nuclearskyart.com.

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