Collaborative Mural at New Day
Updated: Dec 11, 2018
Art Connects welcomed artist Yvonne Shortt + RPGA studio to New Day Shelter to lead a four session collaborative mural making workshop with adult, teen, and youth residents. Cultivating the skills of stencil making, painting, and collective brainstorming, the workshop empowered residents to define who they are and what they want to create in their lives.
Day one of the workshop introduced the group to the art of stencil making. First, they cut out pictures of flowers. Then, using exacto knives, they carefully cut the negative spaces away from their images. This exercise prepared participants to come up with their own images and create imaginative stencils.
Day two of the workshop began the process of putting paint to wall. Children and adults alike learned how to use paint rollers to create a base for the mural. Bright yellow was chosen for the ground color to instill a sense of energy and motivation. As the wall was being primed, participants started suggesting phrases of encouragement to include in the final image. Slogans like, “I am smart,” and “I am successful” were ultimately hand painted onto the wall.
The final day of the workshop was allocated to the teenage girls at the shelter. Together with the professional artists, these youths had the opportunity to share their personal hopes and dreams and learn what steps the artists took to arrive in their current position.
Overall, the final mural holds the learning, sharing, and collaboration of the community that created it. It portrays a journey forward along a path adorned with playful balloons inscribed with their own words of inspiration.
We thank Constellation, an Exelon Company, for awarding us a Community Champions grant to fund this program.