In 2017, the Baltimore United Viewfinders, under the direction of Kristen Brown, installed 6 polytab murals within East Baltimore neighborhoods. The murals were designed by youth ages 9-14 in the Junior Viewfinders during a curriculum taught by Kristen on identity and how we become the people we want to be. Each student chose a personal hero to research. Each image is a collage of one youth and their historical hero.
The murals were created using polytab, a non-woven fabric that can be permanently glued to the wall. Ronald Rucker, Miranda Hontz, Gerad Forte, Wyatt Kroopf, S. Prescott, and Ben Hamburger assisted in the installation of the murals. The murals were printed by Ben Volta. The project was funded by the SouthEast Community Development Corporation and the celebration was funded through MECU's Neighborhood Event Grant.
To learn more about the process of creating the murals and even download the curriculum, visit the resources section.
Part I | Making Soapboxes
Part I of the Becoming curriculum invited the youth to examine how society shapes their identities. Together we studied Black History and the heroes that have paved the way for progress. In response, each youth created their own soapbox to eventually perform atop.
Part II | Making Capes
In part II of the Becoming curriculum, youth explored how they can be heroes in their daily lives. Each participant made a superhero persona, designed and created their uniform, had a photoshoot, and created a magazine cover.
500 TERRY FRANCOIS STREET SAN FRANCISCO
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Part III | Celebrating
In Part III of Becoming, everything culminated into a walking tour. The public was invited to parade through the neighborhood in gold, while the youth performed in front of their murals. The youth planned this event.