Minnesota Disability Mural in downtown Minneapolis

Posted by Adam Johnsen on October 22, 2013

More than 650 artworks are part of the Minnesota Disability Mural Project (MDMP), on exhibitthrough October 30 at City Center in downtown Minneapolis. The 1’x1’ art tiles were created this summer by Minnesotans with disabilities or people with a personal connection to someone with a disability. For many, the art-making was a first-time experience.  For others, this exhibit is the first time they have had their artwork on public display.  Still others make art every week.

A reception will be held Wednesday, October 23 from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. in the City Center atrium and adjoining New Century Theatre (entrances at 615 Hennepin Ave., next to Rosa Mexicano, or off Nicollet Mall or off the Skyway), where a short program at 7:00 will introduce key participants:

Char Coal, a Minneapolis artist who curated the Twin Cities exhibit;

Teaching artists who assisted individuals in making this artwork: Deb Costandine, Mark Davison, Christi Furnas and Tara Innmon;

Bridget Riversmith, who directed a 2011 project in Duluth by with the Arrowhead Alliance of Artists with Disabilities and was an advisor to this project;

Frances Valesco, who originated the Disability Mural Project in 2000 at the Center for Accessible Technology in Berkeley, California; that mural is now on permanent display at the Ed Roberts Campus in the Ashby BART station in Berkeley; the AAAWD project was the second replication of the 2000 project;

Stacey O’Connell and Sheri Pfau, who led workshops in the St. Cloud area for an exhibit held October 4-13 at Gallery St. Germain, a new gallery run by the Paramount Arts Center. It featured 350 art pieces.

This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through an Arts Access Program grant to VSA Minnesota from the Minnesota State Arts Board, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund and by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts.

VSA Minnesota is the state organization on arts and disability and is one of 36 state VSA organizations affiliated with the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C.  VSA Minnesota’s mission is to create a community where people with disabilities can learn through, participate in and access the arts.  Located in Hennepin Center for the Arts at the corner of 6th and Hennepin, the organization is celebrating its 26th year and has a staff of three and a board of nine. For more information, call 612-332-3888 or email disabilitymural@vsamn.org. The entire thousand works of art will be online soon

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