A Family Affair

MMAP La Familia at Summer Community Celebration & Unveiling

On August 23rd, MMAP commemorated East Palo Alto’s thirtieth anniversary as well as celebrated the hard work of this summer’s Teen Mural Program (TMP). Over the summer, TMP students learned about Movements: The Flow of Ideas, People & Resources. Together, they explored past and present social movements and through their artwork came conversations about community, change, and hope. Below is the final mural conceptualized by Artist in Residence, Scape Martinez, and created by Teen Muralists.

Hope, East Palo Alto City Hall, 2415 University Ave, East Palo Alto, CA 94303

This mural draws on movements of social change for inspiration.  Large blue spheres dominate the piece signifying the three branches of government, and the block-like structures give a sense of rigidness to show society’s resistance to change. The design uses abstracted form, color, and space to depict the energy and tension inherent in social movements, aiming to ultimately spread a positive message: “HOPE.”

The culminating celebration was an event filled with love and the spirit of East Palo Alto’s thirty years and beyond was truly felt. It was only right that Poetess Kalamu Chache began the program with a beautiful invocation. Chief Ronald Davis and City Manager Magda Gonzalez spoke to East Palo Alto’s thirtieth anniversary and commemorated the work of over 120 youth in MMAP’s Graffiti Art Project’s (GAP) public art project celebrating the 30th anniversary.

From left to right: Kalamu Chache, Chief Ronald Davis, & City Manager Magda Gonzalez.

Writer and author of Can’t Stop Won’t Stop, Stanford University’s Executive Director of Institute for the Diversity in the Arts, Jeff Chang was the Keynote speaker. In addition, he was also one of TMP’s interviewees this summer. He spoke on the power of the youth movement and that force of art and culture has on changing society.

Jeff Chang delivered an inspiring keynote at this year’s EPA Summer Community Celebration and Mural Unveiling

Of course, the best part of the unveiling is the youth performances. This year TMP’s lyrical cohort was all female and they rocked it. Below is Kiki and Yvonne, both students at Eastside College Preparatory. It was Kiki’s first time in the lyrical cohort and her cadence and rhyme made it seem as if she was a veteran.

Yvonne and Kiana share their lyrics with the crowd at this year’s EPA Summer Community Celebration and Mural Unveiling

This summer in East Palo Alto was a family affair that truly spoke to the power of community and hope. The foundations were built and now the work begins. Cheers to all that was celebrated and accomplished this summer. Be sure to check out the Hope mural as well as the 30- year public art that is displayed at East Palo Alto’s City Hall.

View the entire 2013 Summer Booklet of Programs and Events: 2013 Summer Booklet

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