Reading the Streets: Open Walls Baltimore begins
BALTIMORE – The first installation in Open Walls Baltimore is now complete, marking the start of an ambitious project that intends to help invigorate Station North, Baltimore and make the neighborhood a destination for some of the best street art in the world.
Gaia, one of Baltimore’s local street artists, has curated the group that will be creating murals on vacant buildings in the area and is the first to have completed a piece. The mural was unveiled at an event attended by Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake on March 6.
The 20 works will be going up through April and May, finished in time for the final celebration on May 25.
Artists who will be contributing their talent include Caitlin Cunningham, Candy Chang, Doodles, Ever, Freddy Sam, Gary Kachadourian, Interesni Kazki, Jaz, Jetsonorama, John Ahearn, Jordan Bernier, Josh Van Horne, Mataruda, Maya Hayuk, Momo, Overunder, Specter, Sten & Lex, Swoon, and Vhils.
Open Walls Baltimore has the full support of the community, working with the artists to create pieces that reflect the artists’ originality and style, while enhancing the urban environment. It’s a fair compromise between the freedom that vandalism provides with the attention to detail and creativity legitimacy allows.
Similar projects, such as Living Walls in Atlanta, have helped to draw visitors and investors into a struggling or stagnant area, as well as enliven a public space and start a community dialogue.
The project represents the largest initiative yet from the National Endowment for the Arts “Our Town Grant,” which supports communities trying to shape the physical and social character of a neighborhood with the arts.
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