River District neighbors and drivers on Highway 160 can see new murals and other artwork popping up in the area as part of the City’s metamorphosis-themed public art project. The project includes seven murals along the North 12th Street corridor and River District.
The City of Sacramento’s Office of Arts and Culture is leading the project in partnership with Sacramento Housing Redevelopment Agency (SHRA), U.S Department of Housing and Urban Development’ (HUD) and local artists collective Trust Your Struggle.
“These murals and locations were chosen with a lot of community input,” said Donald Gensler, the City’s public arts manager. “The project’s proximity to Mirasol Village, which is currently being redeveloped by SHRA, and to homeless service provider Loaves & Fishes makes it important to showcase and celebrate the diversity of the people and places in the River District.”
“We are grateful for the opportunity to be in community with Loaves & Fishes through this project,” said Franceska Gamez from Trust your Struggle, the artist collective leading the community outreach and mural designs. “They’ve been an oasis for folks who are experiencing homelessness for over 40 years. We had the privilege of working with youth from Mustard Seed School, as they helped us paint the caterpillar mural. We hope they can see the mural someday and remember they had a hand in creating it.”
The project is funded largely through a $350,000 grant from HUD’s Choice Neighborhoods Initiative (CNI) program. The program seeks to create not just housing but to also focus on helping to create public spaces that promote people’s health, happiness and well-being
The project is part of the City’s “Creative Edge” plan to bring art and culture to all Sacramento neighborhoods and communities.
“We’re excited that the murals and art will be coming to this area, especially as we finalize construction of the Mirasol Village affordable housing,” said LaShelle Dozier, head of SHRA. “The public art complements SHRA’s efforts to connect this historically isolated area to new transit, employment centers, services, retail and cultural amenities, creating a vibrant gateway to downtown Sacramento.”
The artists and organizations for this project were chosen after a competitive application and panel selection process managed by the Office of Arts and Culture and the Sacramento Arts Culture and Creative Economy Commission.
North 12th Street public art project also includes a large art sculpture that will be located at the corner of Richards Boulevard and North 12th Street. Final approval on the sculpture will go to City Council on Aug. 17.