Mural on State and Gorham in Madison Wisconsin depicting the carbon cycle in science.

Carbon Cycle Mural

State Street Apartments
318 W. Gorham Street, Madison, WI



Julia Nepper, PhD

Josh Pultorak, PhD

Sarah Miller, MS

David Baum, PhD

Margaret Thairu, PhD


Mary Lang Sollinger

Gregg Fergus

Chris Parker

Conroy Family Foundation

The mural is an illustration of the physical and chemical connections that bind all life on earth together. The things we can see (trees, soil, ourselves) are made possible by billions (trillions?) of things we cannot see. Although chemistry may seem very abstract, chemical interactions and transformations build and change around us.

Details from the Scientists

So much of the natural world is invisible. The mural shows how plants are connected underground through their roots, bacteria, and fungal hyphae. Plants use networks of fungal hyphae to send signals  – some chemical, some electrical –  to convey information about resources and stress.

–Sarah Miller, MS

Every living thing has a role to play in the movement of energy around our planet. Organisms are constantly transforming the world around them, even the tiniest bacterium. It is fascinating to think about the incredible diversity of life that grew from the relatively barren rock the Earth once was.

–Julia Nepper, PhD

Mural Creation Timelapse

Explore the mural!