After reading yesterday's post, Goodbye to one Tineo mural..., you had a hint of what would be coming in the evening. Our August 15 post on this blog showed a photo of the new mural, the list of sponsors, and some details. Back on July 9th, we even showed the empty mural frame. Still, would 110 degrees and thunderstorms threaten mural-lovers and community enthusiasts at the Mountain View Church of Christ? Ha! Tucsonans go all out for a new mural by revered local artist David Tineo. (Maybe I should also mention the free food inside the church multi-purpose room. :)
Around 5:15, the parking lot was mostly empty... as were the seats outside the mural, which was still covered with a blue tarp:
Not long after 5:30, the multi-purpose room inside was mostly full. The group headed outside, and people who contributed to the mural (with support, ideas, and the actual brushstrokes) yanked off the tarp that'd been covering the mural against rain (as well as sneak peeks):
... then posed for photos as everyone else applauded:
You've seen the mural in the announcement from August 15, so here's a close-up of the "heart":
The mural has eight panels, each painted by a different group but designed to fit together (and bolted in place, for sure). You can see that above, along with some participants' signatures.
Below is the celebration inside the church. That's David Tineo on the right, holding a framed print of the work that he helped to coordinate:
It was a real community-building project. Around the edges of the indoor festivities was a table full of people — kids and above — painting another set of works to be made into a collage. People in recovery through CODAC worked side-by-side with residents of the Hedrick Acres Neighborhood — and anyone else who wanted to join in. I had a long talk with an artist named John who said that art has let him express himself, helping him recover in a way that words alone can't. (Some of his work hangs at Café 54 downtown.)
As David pointed out in his remarks after the unveiling, projects like this help to build bridges — even (and especially) in communities like Tucson with the two tragedies of the January 8th shooting and the terrible economy that could also tear us apart. He and others are working to do just the opposite through mural projects like Changing Hearts & Minds.
(The Tucson Sentinel story Mural's brushstrokes meant to encircle community has more about the evening, and another story Mural paints picture of hope has background information. There's more on the Hedrick Acres Neighborhood Association site: "Changing Hearts and Minds" Mural Project. And here's the CODAC web page Changing Hearts & Minds Mural.)