Meet Genevieve Esson!

Esson is a local artist designing a mannequin for the Mannequin’s Project; she is representing U. City Parks


Genevieve Esson is an award-winning visual artist and designer from St. Louis. She has over 22 years of experience and is one of the artists participating in The Mannequins Project this year. She is representing the U. City Parks and their 100 year anniversary. 

“I’ve always wanted to participate in it,” Esson said. “It seemed like a fun project, and I look at it as a challenge. I like to explore and keep the doors open. It just kind of gives me more creative outlets.”

The Mannequins Project consists of contestants using recycled or thrifted items to decorate a mannequin for a business in the Delmar Loop. Esson has experience creating art through a variety of mediums but mainly uses acrylics. Having worked with recycled materials before on other 2D or 3D surfaces, a mannequin was something new.

“There are rules and regulations I have to follow,” Esson said. “You want to make it stand up to the elements.”

This year’s theme is “Recycle Now…It’s Our Responsibility!” Esson is taking this theme and merging it with the parks she is representing.

“This is for the U. City Parks and Recreation, and this is the 100 year anniversary,” Esson said. “I have to keep the sports theme going. I have like old used balls, golf clubs, jerseys and things like that.”

Esson has done over 21 art installations as a painter and multimedia artist, including quite a few for U. City. She has painted animal & butterfly statues, the STL250 cake sculptures, Metro Bus murals, benches, utility/traffic stop boxes, streetlight banners, vinyl window murals, crosswalks, playhouses and the big town signage for the city of Maplewood. 

She is also behind the painted utility boxes in U. City and Maplewood, as well as the window murals and a crosswalk for the Belleville Metro Link Station. But these are only a few of the many pieces she has created. She actively produces smaller art pieces as well.

Esson tries to keep her work modern and contemporary but ultimately considers each project individually till she finds inspiration. 

“I research, find themes and just find something that inspires me. I have to find something.”

The mannequins will be displayed from May 20-June 11. You can also check out Esson’s work here and here