Art + Music

Q&A with Whitney Stoddard, the Spring House Mural Artist

When tasked with designing a distinctive mural for Kiawah River’s flagship residential amenity, the Spring House, Charleston artist Whitney Stoddard pulled her inspiration from the sea islands’ rich and diverse wildlife and the picturesque views from the Spring House.

With interiors by Jenny Keenan Design, Whitney’s mural complements the palette of warm neutrals and pops of color inspired by the natural environment with a richly botanical design painted in black.

We sat down with Whitney to learn more about her style and inspiration for the newly completed Spring House mural, and how the scenes from Kiawah River impacted her design.

Tell us about your mural at Kiawah River’s Spring House.
I worked with local interior designer Jenny Keenan through the Charleston Artist Collective to create the Spring House mural at Kiawah River. Jenny just happened to see my botanical wallpaper in downtown Charleston behind the reception desk at Hotel Emeline and asked me to create something in the same vein for the Spring House. She gave me carte blanche, which was amazing!

What was your inspiration for the mural?
Inspiration for the mural was heavily influenced by local Lowcountry botanicals and I was lucky enough to be able to use the stunning waterfront views from the Spring House to create an outside-in feeling. I wanted it to feel as natural as possible, with a slight modern twist being that the entire mural is painted in black.

Explain why you chose to use the color black.
Black is somewhat of my signature color. It allows me to create depth using only one color with varying levels of saturation. To me, it gives the Spring House a modern aesthetic while creating a bit of whimsy and still allowing nature to be the primary subject.

Does the mural follow your usual artistic style or is it a departure from your other works?
Botanicals are something that I have always loved creating, but they are a bit of a departure from my regular subject matter. It’s always fun to change it up and work on something out of the ordinary.

What do you hope people take away from the artwork?
I love the idea of residents and guests exiting the elevator and feeling as if they are stepping into a relaxing, serene space, especially since the space is centered around wellness.