Dean “RAS” Innocenzi is a graphic designer, videographer, and local graffiti artist, painting the town with portraits for over 12 years. The 37-year-olds’ latest mural at the TerraCycle Building features OlymPic Athlete Athing Mu.
“I feel Athing showed there’s no reason people can’t accomplish great things, coming out of Trenton,” Innocenzi said. “People don’t realize how many amazing people have come from Trenton: Elvin Bethea, Richie Cole, Al Downing, Ernie Kovacs, Dahntay Jones; the list goes on and on of great people that have gone on to achieve great things coming from Trenton.”
This most recent artwork was painted just last week, a couple of days before the Jersey Fresh Jam. The artist’s work is featured at the back of the building, portraying Mu just after she won her world record-breaking sprint.
“Athing’s accomplishments at the 2021 Olympics put her right up there among these all-time greats from Trenton. So in painting the mural of Athing, I hope it can inspire and remind people that people continue to do great things coming out of Trenton, NJ and hopefully, Athing can inspire young people to be dedicated and work hard to achieve any goal in life,” Inocenzi said.
Inocenzi started in Trenton, spray painting with friends across the city before joining Leon Rainbow and learning there was an entirely legitimate art scene in Trenton. “I guess they saw something that I might have had some potential, ’cause they taught me a lot,” Inocenzi said.
Innocenzi started to create life-life portraits of celebrities and ordinary people in Trenton alike beginning in 2013. He works on a greyscale having up to 9 different cans of spray paint to even out the tones. “One of the key things with spray paint that makes it easier and faster is when working in grayscale, I have nine different shades of color from black to white,” Inocenzi said. “I tend to work from dark to light. I like to lay in the darker tones and then layer on top of that”
Inocenzi will continue his work on memorials and murals celebrating the people of the city of Trenton. “I try to do things that are relevant not only to me but other people because I would like my work to be not so much about me and looking cool, but something that has a deeper meaning,” Innocenzi said. To learn more about Innocenzi, check out a previous article at this link.