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In spring of 2012 Eduardo Pineda's ENGAGE: Mural Arts class began work on a three year project which created murals for the barrier fence surrounding the 601 City Center construction site in downtown Oakkland (bounded by 11th and 12th Streets, Jefferson and Martin Luther King Jr. Streets) for Shorenstein Properties LLC. This was part of ENGAGE@CCA, a community-engagement program of CCA’s Center for Art and Public Life.
In this first year, the class worked with residents of the Harrison Hotel to express important aspects of community – sense of place, nurturing support, and self-empowerment. The hotel was a residency program that transitioned people from homelessness to homefulness, and was a five-minute walk from the site. Six murals were produced for 12th Street side of the site. Students used residents’ personal stories as metaphors, weaving together urban architecture, landscape, and language in order to connect with the greater Oakland community. Interspersed between the murals were text panels with quotes, from residents, about what community meant to them. To build trust, and understand the residents better, students volunteered at the Hotel in service programs provided by LifeLong Medical Care, a health services provider in the affordable living building provided by Resources for Community Development.
In total, three Mural Arts classes worked to develop a vibrant temporary visual environment in downtown Oakland during the period of the Great Recession of the late 2000s, when construction of the 601 City Center office tower was halted, and the site was left unbuilt. The murals were painted on panels and were rearranged once, when construction was restarted, in order to accommodate the changing configuration of the barrier fencing. The building was completed and opened in 2019, and the murals were destroyed.
painting mural painting born digital 7 murals: 6 murals on panel 8 x 8 ft.;1 mural on panels 8 x 16 ft. image/jpeg
Pineda, Eduardo Bair, Luke Barquero, Michael Bortz, Daniel Casey, Elaine Chan, Rosanne Fowler, Grace Janvier, Courtney Kim, Bibi Lei, Brian Oppermann-Sparks, Sean Oster, Carlsbad Rea-Downing, Susannah Sagastume, Haroldo Shih, Olivia