A picturesque landscape of farms and fields shape Carnation’s Northeast 8th Street.
Over the long stretch of road, pastures, homes and barns can be seen from either side. One of these barns will become a canvas of a new mural painted by Copenhagen-based artist Jacoba Niepoort.
The building is one of the Valley’s three original homesteads recently bought by Christa and David St. Pierre. The property will be turned into a medicinal herb farm and store, supplying tinctures, salves and teas to the Valley.
Niepoort, 32, has been painting murals around the world for the past three year, most recently in Austria, Spain, Germany, Chile, Argentina and Costa Rica. Before arriving in Carnation, she completed a 36,000-square-foot mural in the Canadian city of Halifax, Nova Scotia.
In her art, Niepoort analyzes the bonds between people, nature and the body in a complex and delicate way, visualizing universal feelings and topics.
“It’s important that I can do my art and stand behind the product,” she said. “I loved the owners’ dreams for this farm and found it in line with my mural themes — the universal interactions between humans and the balance between nature and humanity.”
Niepoort arrived at the Carnation farm Oct. 9 to paint the mural.
David and Christa St. Pierre bought the land about a year ago. They bought it with the vision of turning it into a medicinal herb farm and store using products grown on the property. They are currently in the prototype phase of creating products. They anticipate an opening date of Herbette Farm sometime next year.
“We’ve always like organic things,” David St. Pierre said. “We’ve always wanted to be stewards of the land and give back to our community.”
St. Pierre said he’s seen many other barns with a large mural painted on them.
“I’ve always loved seeing large, beautiful pieces of art painted on the side of barns,” he said.
He heard about Niepoort’s work through a friend of a friend and booked her to design and paint a mural on the side of the Carnation barn.
“It’s been wonderful having her,” he said. “Her [design] hits the right note for our farm. It hits the right note for the Valley.”
Niepoort’s design reflects the grandness of nature and the process from seed to plant. The finished design shows a human hand holding a mound of dirt with a small green plant growing out of it. The long roots of the plant connect to another plant growing from the human’s other hand.
“It shows the connection between nature and humans,” she said. “The awe of something growing from seed to plant.”