As new murals emerged in Boston this summer, I tried to track two through different stages of development. Both reminded me that mural artists must envision their work on a grand scale while also dealing with daily details and constant complexities. Many minds, hands, and hearts helped both murals come into being. One source common to both was the force of the non-profit organization Now and There, headed by Kate Gilbert, featuring the Year of the Woman in public art. I have referenced and quoted from their wonderful website at several points in this post.
Artists in Action on New Public Art
As I have discovered more about women artists with work on the established list of Public Art Walk Boston, I’ve grown alert to women artists producing new public art. They have energized me to share a few photos and links to current resources that reveal the purposes and passions of people who have made the murals happen.
Ann Lewis and “See Her”
“Detroit-based artist-activist Ann Lewis arrived in Boston in February 2017 with a mission burning in her heart and a big idea percolating in her head. She wanted to bring greater awareness to the challenges of incarcerated women—an often-forgotten segment of the prison population—and in particular, support them as they transition out of prison and into successful lives. She also wanted to make a mark so bold it could not be ignored in Boston’s emerging street art scene.” (The first paragraph of “A Mural Looms Large” by Kate Gilbert on the Now +There website. ) Captions for the first four photos above are quoted from the story. For the full story, pertinent photos, and links to news articles click here. For interview/dialogue with reflections on workshops with the women, read Martina Tanga’s post. Just added: Activist Artist: An Interview with Ann Lewis by Leah Triplett Harrington for Big Red and Shiny relates the mural to earlier projects by Ann Lewis.
Silvia López Chavez and “Patterned Behavior”
“Patterned Behavior by Silvia López Chavez will transform and enliven an unwelcoming concrete underpass along The Charles River Esplanade by creating a striking, joyful mural that echoes the beauty, diversity, and energy of Boston.” First paragraph about “Patterned Behavior” on the There+Now website. Captions are quoted from that story. For the full story with colorful images and news articles, click here. Updating September 12 with this link to WBUR Artery Another Mural Pops Up in Boston by Alexa Vasquez.
Glad that I could be in the presence of these artists and murals, I hope that you can too or at least imagine such experiences, based on what this post offers.
For broader background and range, visit the websites of both artists.
For Ann Lewis, start with http://annlew.is/about/
For Silvia López Chavez, start with http://www.silvialopezchavez.com/about/