Hubbard Street Murals

This is part of a project to photograph some of what was the Hubbard Street mural project initiated in the 1970's by Ricardo Alonzo, an Art Institute of Chicago graduate. Over an eight-year period, Alonzo and volunteers from the West Town Community Art Center painted murals along a mile-long stretch of Hubbard Street, from Des Plaines to Ogden, until their funding ran out in 1979. I first noticed the murals out my Metra train window while I was looking to produce a project influenced by Wabi-sabi, and how it translates to an urban environment outside of Japan. They provided an ideal way to explore how time and decay have affected these artworks. The originals would have been vibrant and colourful, time, paint overs, weather and construction have taken their toll on the work. Most people will not see the murals because they are in an obscure place, where most people wouldn't ordinarily have a chance to view them. I want to raise awareness of this still-vibrant, if fading, original community project, and to introduce some of my work locally. After producing some shots in monochrome, I decided to reshoot the set in color to have a better record of the original work.

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