Finally getting started…

I love looking for mural walls. Walking around East Town in the last couple weeks, imagining giant paintings on every surface has been very satisfying. In the early stages of planning a project, everything is abstract. The months of preliminary planning are necessary work, but the project doesn’t start to feel real to me until I am in front of a wall.   Standing on the ground where I will spend hundreds of hours working on a collaborative painting and forging new relationships with a neighborhood is invigorating.

The other event that will really make this project come to life will be our first Community Meeting, this Saturday at Crosslines (July 9 at 5:00 pm).

I hope everyone in East Town will participate at some point in the process. You don’t need any artistic training or background. If you are willing to share your experiences and hopes, you have the essential skills that we need. Any member of the East Town neighborhood, regardless of age or background, can be an essential contributor. Please consider coming to one of the Community Meetings (see “Schedule of Events” at the left) or getting in touch with us through the “Contact” link or through the project Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/EastTownMuralProject/

A few years ago, community muralist Dave Loewenstein accurately described the goals of this sort of collaboration: 

“My work as an artist has been driven by the desire to create opportunities for regular folks to re-inhabit the public spaces in their home towns and fill them with images and conversations that reflect their own hopes and dreams – to begin to re-occupy our visual environment with something more than advertising and sloganeering, and to bring a sense of shared culture, memory, and possibility back to civic life.”

If you would like to read a little more about the community mural movement a good place to start would be this article I wrote in 2012: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/artwrit/community-art-in-midameri_b_2145030.html

I look forward to working with you soon,

Kyle McKenzie

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