Sunflower mural at Rockville Centre business sprouts hope for Ukraine


As Ukraine’s national flower and a key part of its economy, sunflowers have become a global symbol of hope for the country as it faces invasion by Russia. To show support for Ukraine and raise community spirits during a difficult time, Lenox and Park Italian Bistro in Rockville Center recruited local fine art academy Hue Studio to cover its exterior with a sunflower mural.

Putting the sunflowers on display not only honors Ukraine, but also gives back to the community by providing Rockville Center with beautiful artwork that can spread joy to residents for years to come.

The project was headed and coordinated by Hue Studio founder Laura Smith, as well as two teen art students from the studio, Dani Procaccini and Adela Schwarz-Van Praag, who were selected for their artistic talent and dedication to the cause. Between last Friday and Sunday, about 25 community members from the studio volunteered their time to create the mural. The team began with a base coat of white paint and a sketch of the sunflowers, then filled the sketches in with paint, and finished by touching up the details. All in all, the artists spent about 20 hours creating the display. The final product was a bright and bold field of almost 100 sunflowers surrounded by a vibrant blue sky and green grass. The mural is 9 feet tall and 25 feet wide and spans from door to door on the side of the building.

“I think getting everyone together to give back is so special, and the amount of people that have reached out that wanted to help is really, truly amazing,” Smith said. “They’re not getting anything back from this. They’re giving up their whole weekend to give back. It’s just a sense of community which Rockville Centre always has.”

The mural will be permanently displayed for the town on the side of Lenox and Park Italian Bistro building, which is at 41 South Park Ave.

Hue Studio was not compensated for the time and materials donated to make the artwork, instead, the Lenox and Park Italian Bistro will make a substantial donation to benefit Ukraine. The donation is going to a non-profit organization known as Heart to Heart International, which distributes medical supplies and aid to health care facilities in Ukraine. Additionally, Hue Studio has set up a donation page for Heart to Heart International, where community members can easily contribute to the cause.

The page can be directly accessed here. Both businesses will soon be setting up websites with more information about the project and ways to aid Ukraine.

For more information, contact Lenox and Park Italian Bistro at (516) 442-1299 or Hue Studio at (516) 226-0430.