Mural Arts invites the community to witness art inspiring change

Steve Weinik

Art inspires change—or so, that’s what Mural Arts Philadelphia is all about.

With the organization’s latest mural installation happening this weekend, that statement has never been so timely, and the public is invited to join this dedication to see it first hand for themselves. 

Artists Felix St. Fort and Gabe Tiberino—both native Philadelphians— joined forces to create a mural ‘Cecil B. Moore Philadelphia Freedom Fighters’, honoring the unseen women and young people behind this iconic 1960’s Philadelphia civil rights group. 

Steve Weinik

As the release states, under the leadership of Cecil B. Moore, teenagers and young adults successfully desegregated Girard College in 1965 and got into “good trouble,” as civil rights legend John Lewis so famously called it. This timely subject connects the youth of today with the civil rights and voter registration work of the young people from over 50 years ago. To make this poignant time in history come alive, St. Fort and Tiberino used a mixture of portraits and graphic elements, such as Adinkra symbols, to create a unique mural. Adinkra symbols represent different concepts or ideas and originate from West Africa, specifically a region that is now called Ghana. The Freedom Fighters selected ten Adinkra symbols that reflect the values and lessons of their civil rights work in North Philadelphia: Knowledge, Unity, Perseverance, Power of Love, Fortitude, Service, Democracy, Justice, Excellence, and Encouragement. All ten Adinkras are featured in the mural.

This all is part of the continuous 30+ year mission of Mural Arts. Murals make up so much of the culture in Philly, and the beautiful aspect of this artistic side to the City of Brotherly Love is that there are messages that can be portrayed and voices that can be heard. As a release states, Mural Arts aims to empower people, stimulate dialogue, and build bridges to understanding with projects that attract artists from Philadelphia and around the world, and programs that focus on youth education, restorative justice, mental health and wellness, and public art and its preservation.

This most recent addition to the family of creative messages and works of art around the city certainly exemplifies that. 

Cecil B. Moore Philadelphia Freedom FightersMural Arts Philadelphia

The mural dedication will take place this Saturday, Nov. 13 at 2 p.m. and will feature entertainment beforehand and a speaking program after. Philadelphians can head to North 22nd Street and North College Avenue in the city to partake in the action. Partners for ‘Cecil B. Moore Philadelphia Freedom Fighters’ also include the City of Philadelphia, Friends of the 47th District, Beech Companies, Office of Pennsylvania State Representative Malcolm Kenyatta, Girard College, The Jubilee School, and Vaux Big Picture High School.

For more information on Mural Arts Philadelphia, visit muralarts.org


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