City's Office of Public Art Seeks Community Volunteers
The City of Charleston’s Office of Public Art invites community members to participate in the prepping, priming, and painting of the mural project located at 517 Elizabeth Street. The mural is a joint effort by West Virginia native and muralist Zulu Painter, the Charleston Urban Renewal Authority (CURA), the City of Charleston’s Office of Public Art, and the YWCA. It is the first in a series of community mural projects on the East End and West Side of Charleston.
“Public art projects—such as this one—bring members of our community together, contribute to the vibrancy of our city, and convey compelling stories of our culture and history,” said Mayor Amy Shuler Goodwin. “We are excited to see Zulu Painter’s progress on this mural and look forward to seeing the completed project.”
“The concept for the mural—strong influences that empower our future—was developed through conversations with community members. In the mural we see ‘mountain mama’ looking down to her strong daughter,” said Jeff Pierson, Director, City of Charleston’s Office of Public Art. “The power of the mural will be its reflection of the community. It will be a visual documentation of the power of our influences in the past that will keep with us as we build our future.”
“It was really a great experience to be back in my home state in the town where I painted my first mural,” said Zulu Painter, muralist. “It is amazing to see a community embrace the arts like Charleston does.”
“CURA is very excited to be a part of this broad collaboration, which will ultimately beautify a very visible corner and we believe bring people joy for many years to come,” said Ron Butlin, Executive Director, CURA.
“The YWCA is thrilled to have had our East End program warehouse be selected to have a mural painted on it by a nationally renowned West Virginia muralist, Zulu Painter! It has been a dream of ours for 20 years to have our mission of eliminating racism and empowering women reflected in a mural on our warehouse,” said Deb Weinstein, CEO, YWCA. “We are so deeply thankful to the Mayor, the Director of Public Arts, the City of Charleston and CURA for providing this gift to our entire community!”
Community members interested in assisting with the mural project are encouraged to sign up at: https://forms.gle/EX3aejoHKnoLHRV77 or by calling: 304.720.7054. Volunteers will work in smalls teams that will be divided into shifts—masks are strongly encouraged. Dates for mural work have not yet been set as they will be dependent on weather and artist availability. Once registered, volunteers will be contacted with date, time, and location.
Zulu Painter is an international multi-media artist whose large-scale mural work can be seen across the country. The vibrant colors in his paintings help to convey his goal of creating art that uplifts the viewer with positive energy.