This five-story mural will greet returning students for the Fall Semester


Photo courtesy of Christopher Johnson

You’ve just walked out of the shuttle from Main Campus to Riverpark. You go to the Dillingham to use the Mac labs for an art project. Across the street, you see a bright, colourful mural of a toga-clad woman looking out towards the Chattahoochee River. This mural now adorns the Heritage Tower in Uptown Columbus. What’s her story?


Owners of the modernist building located between First Avenue and Broadway, along Ninth Street, utilized private funding to commission Professor and Visual Arts Director Christopher Johnson at Andrew College to complete an abstract mural on Heritage Tower in early June.


According to WRBL, the subject of the mural—the woman in the toga—is “Mrs. Columbus,” a 90-year-old fountain located at Lenora Sarling Memorial Park on Wynnton Road. The Artbeat and the Ledger-Enquirier wrote that the park and its fountain were dedicated to Sarling, a Christian Science pioneer and one of the city’s leading suffragettes and philanthropists. 

Pictured: The original “Miss Columbus” fountain in Lenora Sarling Memorial Park. Photo courtesy of Jessica DeMarco-Jacobson


A pamphlet by Midtown, Inc. states that one of Sarling’s relatives funded the Carrara marble fountain. It was carved in Italy, then erected in Columbus in 1929. According to local legend, the statue “depicts a Columbus girl looking toward Fort Benning for a husband.”


Johnson’s mural was completed on July 29, and stands as an artistic representation of one of Columbus’ most iconic monuments.