On Alcatraz St., one block west of my route, lives a mural by Youth Spirit Artworks.
This is an organization dedicated to giving jobs and job training to older youth in the SF Bay Area. This mural caught my eye once while I was on an alternate route into Berkeley, and it stayed in my memory. I did not know its origin until I did some research for this blog. You can learn more about this program and see details of the mural at http://youthspiritartworks.org/
There are many more murals in Berkeley. Few of them are on my route to work. But one group of muralistas that I will cite here is lead my the powerful muralist, Juana Alicia Montoya. I include them because their inception is at Berkeley City College (the end point of this trip), where we are lucky to have Juana Alicia teaching a community mural class. One example of recent work started in this class is the “Collective Consciousness” mural at the YMCA-PG&E Teen Center in Berkeley.
Then there are the unsponsored (as far as I know), enterprising, salt-of-the-earth, spontaneous, light-footed, low-cost-materials, low-rent, passionate muralists of my neighborhood. This work is so big that I show it in two parts:
Oola thinks that script is wicked TIGHT.
Say what you like about graffiti, Oola and I would rather see the above graffiti murals than the eye-dulling, spirit-numbing corporate graffiti that litters our neighborhood, 2, 3 , 5 placards per block, day after unblinking day.
We’re getting close to the end of the “roadtrip” to my workplace. Summer school has started. Oola and I will stop at a few more attractions, then end up in the amazing Multimedia Department at Berkeley City College.