Art lovers are able to appreciate art wherever they go in Baton Rouge, thanks to the Museum of Public Art’s graffiti mural initiative, a program responsible for the creation of vibrant and contemporary outdoor works that can be found in Old South Baton Rouge.
The Museum of Public Art began as a non-profit organization, guided by local orthodontist Kevin Harris – who declined to comment for this story – and is designed to promote the creation of community inspired murals in Old South Baton Rouge.
According to the museum’s website the inspiration “comes from the street corner, the barber shop, the basketball court… wherever people are. We are in touch and in tune with the community and strive to create imagery that is relevant to the needs and lives of the people whom we serve with art.”
Recently, the museum brought in eight international graffiti artists to create the museum’s latest masterpiece located on 19th Street between Convention Street and North Boulevard. Artists included in the project were Smug, Bonzai, Belin, Does, Odeith, Macs, Sofles and Koka. The public art piece, titled “Egoless” was created over the course of a full weekend, and was completed on Sunday, Nov. 9 and is just the latest project in the museum’s mission to reflect the culture and history of the neighborhood.
“We believe that Public Art is a force for positive community development in ways conscious and unconscious,” states the museum’s website. “How the message is conveyed through imagery, text, and symbolism, effects the soul of the community… instilling a sense of hope, and history, through creative expression which unfortunately in many inner city communities, is stymied and stifled.”
Harris is currently looking to raise funding for his Mural House Project, which will allow unemployed youths to assist public artists to paint murals on other abandoned buildings and transform the Old South Baton Rouge neighborhood. Donations can be made at the project’s Kickstarter page.