We Here

We Here is an art project in Kensington led by artist Roberto Lugo and a Community Advisory Council, focusing on youth, creativity, and pottery.

artist Roberto Lugo

Artwork by Roberto Lugo, 2023. Photography by Tiffany Smith. Courtesy of R & Company.

Community Meeting for We Here at Cantina la Martina, April 6, 2023. Photo by Steve Weinik.

About the Project 

We Here is a community-engaged art project celebrating creativity and resilience in Kensington. Led by Mural Arts, artist Roberto Lugo, and a Community Advisory Council of Kensington residents, the project aims to expand access to the arts in Kensington, focusing on youth and pottery.

During Fall 2023-Spring 2024, We Here will hold pattern-making and pottery workshops with Kensington school groups and residents. In Summer 2024, the project will culminate with the installation of three large-scale outdoor sculptures designed by Lugo, with contributions and feedback from community residents, at public sites in Kensington. A series of public programs and storytelling events will take place during June-October 2024.

Roberto Lugo reimagines traditional ceramics with a 21st-century street sensibility. He utilizes classical pottery forms in conjunction with portraiture and surface design reminiscent of his Kensington upbringing and hip-hop culture. Lugo’s vessels combine elements of urban life, graffiti, and portraits of individuals who have been historically absent from traditional luxury ceramics, such as Sojourner Truth, Dr. Cornel West, and The Notorious BIG, as well as Lugo’s family members and, very often, himself.

We Here fuses Lugo’s art-making practice with community engagement, highlighting creativity in Kensington and the importance of—and potential for—more equitable access to the arts.

To get involved / for more information, contact:

Roberto Lugo, Put Yourself in the Picture, 2022, mixed media, 240 x 144 x 324 inches, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: David Michael Howarth Photography

Upcoming Events 

Pattern Making Workshops
Join Mural Arts Philadelphia for a pattern-making workshop guided by a renowned local artist. In this pattern-making workshop, participants of all ages and skill levels will have the opportunity to express their vision of Kensington through surface design on vessels. Your creative ideas will serve as inspiration for Roberto, who will shape three unique pieces inspired by your designs. These pieces will be installed in the Spring. Be a part of this exciting artistic process and showcase your creativity with us!

Ms. Brenda CCV

  • Date: September 29, 2023
  • Time: 12:30 to 2:30 pm 
  • Address: 2646 Kensington Ave, Community Center at Visitation

Hope Park Back to School Resource Fair

  • Date: September 2, 2023
  • Time: Noon to 3 pm
  • Address: 215 E Indiana Ave

The Village that Heals Youth Camp

  • Date: August 22, 2023
  • Time: Noon to 2 pm
  • Address: NKCDC field, 2717 Jasper St

Cade Kids Afternoon

  • Date: August 26, 2023
  • Time: 2 pm to 5 pm
  • Address: 2646 Kensington Ave, Community Center at Visitation

McPherson Library Back to School Resource Fair

  • Date: August 26, 2023
  • Time: Noon to 3 pm 
  • Address: McPherson Square Park


Project Team 

Roberto Lugo, Lead Artist
Megan Voeller, Curator of Public Engagement
Ise Oberlender, Roberto Lugo Studio Manager
Anna Drozdowski, Project Manager
Yinka Orafidyia, Pottery Instructor
Nitza Rosario, Pottery Instructor
Digital Atelier, Fabrication
Frank Berrios, Author
Eric MacLaughlin, Graphic Design
Gustavo Garcia / Colibri Workshop, Videographer

Mural Arts Team 

Nadia Malik, Porch Light Director
Page Phillips, Porch Light Curator/Project Manager
Shatoya Howard, Porch Light Senior Storefronts Manager
Emily Crane, Color Me Back Program Manager
Mat Tomezsko, Color Me Back Mural Manager
Corey Cooper, Color Me Back Assistant Artist
Chad Eric Smith, Senior Director of Communications and Brand Management
Genevieve Richardson, Manager of Institutional Relations
Steve Weinik, Senior Photographer/Senior Manager of Digital Media and Technology

We Here Community Advisory Committee 

John Walsh
Claire Sitarz
Drew Spence
Brenda Mosley
Daisie Cardona
Margarita Gonzalez
Katelyn Stoler
Sunny Phanthavong
Tyler Kline
Neyda Rios
J.C. Zerbe


Major support for We Here has been provided by The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage, with additional support from Hummingbird Foundation and the City of Philadelphia Department of Behavioral Health and Intellectual disAbility Services.