Winterfest windows 2019-12-07 034
Local News

Artist gives downtown Flossmoor a seasonal touch

Nico Martinez beside the display window of Dunning’s Market,
part of the seasonal   images he designed and painted on 
downtown Flossmoor windows.
(Eric   Crump/H-F Chronicle)

When local residents arrived in downtown Flossmoor for Winterfest on Dec. 7, they were greeted by winter scenes and symbols to help set the mood for the festivities. Anyone traveling west on Flossmoor Road would emerge from the viaduct to a large yellow and green sign, “Greetings from Flossmoor” along with the village slogan and logo.

Display windows from Dunnings Market south to the corner were covered with symbols of the season’s religious observances, including a Christmas tree for the Christian holiday, a menorah and driedel to represent Jewish Hanukkah and a mazao and kinara to represent Kwanzaa.

The rest of the windows depict the traditional activities of a snowy winter day, with children sledding, building a snowman and throwing snowballs and, in a whimsical touch, a squirrel, a bird and a bunny ice skating. 

Festivalgoers had artist Nico Martinez to thank for the winter scenes. 

Martinez, a freelance artist and illustrator who has been high-functioning austistic all his life, is the son of Dunnings owner Maureen Mader. He was inpired early by cartoons.

“I’ve been drawing all my life,” he said. 

He has studied at Columbia College and the American Academy of Art in Chicago, where he currently lives. He visits Flossmoor and Olympia Fields regularly, though, and works part time at Dunnings.

The window project took about 40 hours to complete. He said his mother provided a vision for the project and he created the design. He thanked Dunnings staff members for helping with the painting. 

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