Industrious Light: Leviathan Main Belting

The churn of history in South Philadelphia.

artist Phillip Adams

Industrious Light: Leviathan Main Belting © 2015 Mural Arts Philadelphia / Phillip Adams. Photo by Steve Weinik.

Industrious Light © 2015 Mural Arts Philadelphia / Phillip Adams. Photo by Steve Weinik.

The mural design and idea was through that machinery, to the curtains and drapery, to the fabric, to the tree, more as a symbolism, showcasing these hidden gems of history that have evolved and both of these speak so much for the urban fabric.

- Phillip Adams

About the Project 

The third mural in the Industrious Light series covers the south and west walls of the former Main Belting Company. The work wraps around the corner of the building, showcasing the stages of the historical uses of the building.

In the 19th and early 20th centuries, the Main Belting Company manufactured the enormous belts that kept the industrial gears spinning in Philadelphia and beyond. They also fabricated tarps for covered wagons and sailboats. In its heyday, Main Belting was a key part of the self-sustaining ecosystem, that kept the machine driven economy of Philadelphia moving.

As that ecosystem collapsed in the second half of the 20th century, the building adapted to a new use in an a new city. Thanks to building owner and inventor Steven Krupnick, the former industrial space has been home to a thriving creative community since the 1970’s. Studios are now filled with artists, entrepreneurs, and small business owners. Krupnick has successfully curated a community that feeds his creativity and ideas while also providing affordable studio space for artists. The scope of history of this building made it a natural fit for the Industrious Light series.