Artist Transforms Butte Fire Rubble Into Pieces of Art

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CALAVERAS COUNTY -- It's been nearly six months since the Butte Fire exploded, destroying homes in Calaveras and Amador Counties, but for some, it feels like just yesterday that the flames ripped through their neighborhoods leaving nothing but rubble and ashes.

Instead of letting the fire win, a Murphys artist is turning the destruction into a masterpiece.

Mary Jane Genochio's home burned to the ground. The victim, and executive director of the Calaveras County Arts Council, is just one of about 50 who donated to the "Pieces" project, a mosaic created from charred remains of the fire.

"It'd be really amazing—healing—to take things from the rubble and re-purpose them and re-imagine them into something beautiful," said Robin Modlin, lead artist of "Pieces."

The mosaic will be a large, double-sided wall in Mountain Ranch. Modlin will also create a traveling exhibit to promote Pieces. The artist said the finished mosaic will be revealed on the one year anniversary of the fire.

The Calaveras County Arts Council is working to find funding for the $10,000 project.

"Donations welcomed donations needed in order for this to come to completion because it's part of Calaveras history now," said Genochio.

If you're interested in donating call the arts council at (209) 754-1774.

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