Riley's Beauty Salon Mural

As part of Baltimore’s 1% for Public Art Program, BOPA is working with the York Road Partnership and the Govanstowne Business Association to create a mural series depicting native birds along the York Road corridor between 43rd Street and Glenwood Avenue. Artist Iandry Randriamandoso, a former MICA Community Arts student, chose local birds as the subjects for the series because of their universality, inclusiveness, and connection to the local environment.

“Birds play an important role in maintaining balances in our ecosystem and add enjoyments to our lives with their beauty—both in plumage colors and distinct songs. In ever changing urban landscapes, they represent adaptation, resilience and the continuation of life. When Changes occur in a neighborhood, it will change the dynamic make-up of the population—new inhabitants come; some leave; some stay and adapt with the new changes. Eventually, they represent us and our neighbors.”
Iandry Randriamandroso

Three murals have been completed to date–keep your eyes out for more.

Academy Cleaners Mural Progress
Academy Cleaners Mural

 

Elephants Groundbreaking

The Greater Mondawmin Community Association and Artblocks, winners of the 2012 PNC Transformative Art Prize, have officially broken ground on installing 5 life-sized elephant sculptures in Druid Hill Park.

Stop by on Wednesday, June 11 at 2:30 pm for the unveiling celebration!

Forever Together / I Am Here Because Its Home by Stephen Powers

Forever Together / I Am Here Because Its Home by Stephen Powers

The first time I met Steve Powers, he climbed out of the big white BOPA family van sporting a yellow raincoat and a Guided by Voices T shirt. The world-renowned Philly-born graff-writer-turned-Fulbright-scholar was in town for a marathon of cross-city site visits and community meetings for our upcoming Love Letter to Baltimore project this fall. (Haven’t heard much about it yet? That’s because we’re still planning it!) When Housing offered up the wall space for what Steve called a “temporary forever” mural, he tacked that onto his trip.

I showed him the lift and pointed out the wall at 2454 E. Eager Street—the corner house in a row of city-owned vacants slated to be demolished later this summer.

He quickly walked passed it and all the way down Eager Street. The yellow raincoat floating behind him made him look like a mad scientist.

When he came back he asked if they were all vacant. I said they were, that we had just planned on the wall at 2454, but we could ask about the rest.

Less than 24 hours later we were signing a right of entry agreement for 35 properties; Steve ordered 10 gallons of “Ravens Purple” and a power generator for his paint sprayer and got to work. Not on painting, but on talking to the people who live next door—on Montford, on Eager, on Port—about what they love and what they hate about their city.

So began the first line of Steve ESPO Powers’s Love Letter to Baltimore: FOREVER TOGETHER / I AM HERE BECAUSE ITS HOME.

Can’t wait for the rest.

Prepping the wall for "I Am Here Because Its Home"

Prepping the wall for “I Am Here Because Its Home”

Sketching out the V in "Forever"

Sketching out the V in “Forever”

Forever Together / I Am Here Because Its Home by Stephen Powers

“Temporary is permanent and together can be forever” – Steve Powers on his temporary mural which spans from 2402-2454 E. Eager St.

 

 

 

 

The Charles Street Reconstruction Project includes new travel/parking pavement, sidewalk repavement, new curbs, signage, replanting of trees, new crosswalks, bike lanes, etc. on Charles Street between 25th Street and University Parkway. The most extensive of the planned renovation is proposed between 33rd Street and just north of 34th Street. An artist has been commissioned to engage the plaza being created on the east side of Charles between 33rd & 34th Streets with an artwork that is integrated into the landscape site work.

This piece, Optical Gardens, by Laura Haddad and Tom Drugan, an artist team from Seattle, Washington, is currently being install now and over the next few months, with a potential project completion date of August 2014. Optical Gardens is conceived as a platform that gives expression to unique natural and cultural characteristics of Charles Village, including its culture, community, built environment, natural environment, climate, and seasons.

Baltimore artist (and 2014 Sondheim Semifinalist) Sebastian Montorana was contracted to carve the “season rooms” and can be seen in pictures on site installing these elements.

IMG_0852 IMG_0857 IMG_0846 IMG_0844 IMG_0837 IMG_0836 IMG_0833 IMG_0831 IMG_0830 Stone Stages_Page_2 Stone Stages_Page_1

From the Walters Art Museum’s ART BITES program last weekend, there is a new blog, http://bmorepublicart.dreamhosters.com/, intended to function as a crowdsourced site to collect images of our city’s murals, sculptures, monuments and artworks and help to make them more accessible. More info to come soon but definitely worth taking a look at!