Sunday, December 9, 2012

Depressing story about obliterated mural

The Mural Arts Program in Philadelphia is still trying to figure out why and by whom this mural was obliterated. It was apparently a job by hired professionals. The article is also interesting for the information they provide about the history of the artist depicted and of MAP.

[Image: the side of a light putty-grey stucco building with a black and putty-grey mural on it probably around 2 stories tall. It depicts Dox Thrash, an artist who invented a printing technique that produces velvety blacks and dark colors. The mural itself makes witty use of velvety black contrasting negative space, showing the artist at work and including several vignettes. It's painted in a 1930s folk-cubist style which immediately calls to mind the Harlem Renaissance and African American art of the era, and the vignettes are knitted together in a seamless graphic angular flow. The image below shows the mural completely painted over in black.]

Image: Mural Arts Program via theartblog.org


bc said...

It is depressing. The work is instantly recognizable as a huge print, and a homage to printmaking. But as to why, most likely the story has to do with money. A "developer" wants to "redevelop" the area, and dealing with protections for historically or culturally significant buildings would have impeded his plans to make a profit.

Ciana Pullen said...

Yeah, probably.