ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – During the 2014 protests in the St. Louis region after the shooting death of 18-year-old Michael Brown, an artistic movement called “Paint for Peace” emerged from the rubble.
The movement consisted of hundreds of artists and volunteers who painted boarded up buildings throughout the city of Ferguson and on South Grand Boulevard in St. Louis.
Beginning Aug. 27, the Millstone Gallery at the Center of Creative Arts (COCA) will debut an exhibit entitled “Outside In: Paint for Peace,” showcasing murals painted on the boards from the various buildings. The art display will run through Nov. 19 at five other locations, including the Ferguson Youth Initiative, Gallery 210 at University of Missouri – St. Louis and the Sheldon Art Galleries.
Dr. Jacquelyn Lewis-Harris, visiting curator for the event, said the exhibits will serve as a means of reflection and a beacon hope. Each venue will also feature a timeline of the events in Ferguson, beginning with the day Brown was shot and through the grand jury decision.
“[The exhibit] is like a visual marker about what happened and how people reacted in a positive way to negative things that had happened,” Lewis-Harris explained. “They brought in messages of hope, renewal, and really positive messages of how we need to move forward in the region.”
“Outside In: Paint for Peace” will highlight a total of 21 pieces during the exhibition. The boards run as large as 20 feet by 8 feet and can take up as much as a full gallery wall.
Lewis-Harris hopes the exhibit can eventually be showcased on a nationwide tour.
“This work is pretty remarkable,” Lewis-Harris said. “We really have some beautiful, aesthetically pleasing pieces that were worked on by people who worked together to come up with a really wonderful image. That speaks a lot to the intent of how they really wanted to work together to counter the narrative of people who would destroy what was there.”
Outside In: Paint for Peace schedule of events:
- The Millstone Gallery at COCA (AUG 27–OCT 30)
- Gallery 210 at the University of Missouri-St. Louis (AUG 27–OCT 30)
- Missouri History Museum (AUG 27–OCT 30)
- Vaughn Cultural Center (SEP 2–NOV 4)
- Ferguson Youth Initiative (SEP 2–OCT 30)
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