Category historical murals
Murals offer Many Ways to Celebrate a City: “Chelsea Resilient: Call and Response Through the Ages” and “City of Dreams”
In mid-May I visited two mighty murals barely two blocks apart: “Chelsea Resilient: Call and Response Through the Ages” by David Fichter and “City of Dreams” by Silvia López Chavez. With great enthusiasm, I now share photos, quotes, and links that should convey the rich history and possibilities of both murals.
Public art in Somerville has enlightened me in many ways in recent years. Here are two more examples, each enlivening my resources as a long-time volunteer guide at deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum in Lincoln. Both focus on fascinating aspects of Somerville’s Union Glass Company, owned by Julian deCordova through the early years of the twentieth century. One is among the seven vibrant panels of the Union Square History Murals on the building where Webster Avenue (55-50) and Prospect Street (70) intersect. The other is a bright sturdy signpost, among more than fifty others in Conway Park on Somerville Avenue. Here are photos, quotes, and notes to elaborate their connections.
Selected and funded by Percent-for-Art program in Cambridge, Monique Aimee proposed, planned, and painted her mural on all sides of the four tall brine tanks along the lot for Saint Peter’s Field. She began near the end of June and finished near the end of August. My photos here come from a few visits there throughout the summer. The links should take you to videos and exciting photos of the work in progress on Monique Aimee’s Instagram site: https://www.instagram.com/moniqueaimee/ The quotes here should give background that lets you visit in person or online.
These three murals within three blocks of each other build on local history and also have histories of their own, revealed as I lately took time to look at them and look online about them. A great resource was Lisa Houck’s documenting of the processes and people involved in restoring her mural on her blog and website. I hope now that the other murals noted here can get similar support to regain clarity, color, and impact.
David Phillips is a sculptor; David Fichter is a muralist. With their distinctly different materials, both are masters of rendering historical figures and events. Both have created public art that is densely packed with researched images and documents. As public art, the expansive colorful mural and the tactile intimate bronze relief wait openly for anyone who wants to focus on some sign or scene and make their own associations.
Almost caught up with some recent temporary art, I’ll share some views of three murals in my home city, Cambridge. Two, by Be Sargent, have been here for nearly twenty years. One, by David Fichter, has been for fourteen. All three begin above eye-level, so I had seldom made eye contact with the animals or people depicted.
Walking to my nearby Porter Square and a bit beyond in Cambridge, I visited murals that show elements of history in ways that suit this artform. You can learn and sense a lot about earlier centuries in Porter Square by walking the block that contains three related murals. You can take in the impact and origins of a significant statesman’s life by standing in the presence of the Tip O’Neill mural in North Cambridge.