UPDATE: BASF takes a look at artist’s first mural at Downtown Rescue Mission, seven more to come

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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) - Back in February, The Downtown Rescue Mission released their idea for a large mural project to color the dining hall. With the help of community donations, their goal is to have eight different murals in a place so many rely on.

Prashanth Rao and BASF were the first company to donate the money to the mission for a mural. They took their first peak at the masterpiece on Wednesday.

"Wow," Rao said. "This is fantastic, this is exactly what we as a corporation wanting to be involved in the community were looking for. BASF believes very strongly that we need to be involved in the community we serve, this is one humble attempt."

When Downtown Rescue Mission's John Niemeyer told them about the mission's vision for the dining hall walls, he hooked BASF.

"We appreciate so much BASF leading the way with this project and being the first donor for this mural concept," Niemeyer said. "The dining hall is such a focal point. Everyone comes through here to eat, hundreds of thousands of people a year, come through this room right here."

The mission is working to secure donations for four additional paintings for the dining hall.

"Downtown Rescue Mission does so much for the community," Artist Logan Tanner said. "I mean they are just like the apostles in this image. They're feeding the community like Jesus instructed."

Tanner said he kept one goal in mind during the past two and a half months of work.

"I hope it creates a cohesive narrative about Jesus's ministry and his mission, and sort of encapsulates what he wanted to get across to us," Tanner said. "How to treat our fellow man, how to treat those who are less fortunate, how to treat anyone who has a need that we can fill."

Tanner, an artist whose studio is located at Lowe Mill, said he is ready to create the next seven murals.

"From the nativity to the ascension," Tanner said. "I'm really anxious to see how it will look when they're all finished and there's a lot of color in this room."

For companies hoping to join the mission's efforts, it costs $1,000 dollars total in donor money. But, the impact is priceless.

"It's something that is a permanent in its effect so it's just going to keep giving year, after year, after year," Niemeyer said.

The Downtown Rescue Mission has secured donors for three more murals. But, if you, or a group, would like to sponsor the four additional paintings, you can call Niemeyer at (256)713-4311, email him at john.niemeyer@downtownrescuemission.org, or visit the mission's website for more information at downtownrescuemission.org/ .