Jan 19

Mural Arts Dedicates New Mural in SEPTA's Suburban Station

by: Chad Eric Smith

On January 17, 2023, in partnership with SEPTA, Mural Arts Philadelphia celebrated the first mural dedication of the year. Artist Lisa Kelley created a 120-foot mural inside SEPTA’s Suburban Station called my art gives me a voice. The mural was inspired by the chirps of bluebirds, wrens, and chickadees that Kelley listens to when she walks in a park to clear her mind. Kelley hopes that the mural, which features suns, flowers, geometric shapes, and mandalas, is meant to evoke feelings of healing and growth and will uplift the spirits of people who see it. 

The designs used in the mural are from printmaking workshops that Kelley led for participants of Mural Arts’ Color Me Back program, a same-day work and pay program in collaboration with the City of Philadelphia’s Department of Behavioral Health and Intellectual disAbility Services that combines participatory art-making and access to social services.

During the dedication, founder and executive director Jane Golden, who also was the event’s master of ceremonies, gave a speech exploring the theme behind the project’s title. “We at Mural Arts believe art has the power to Beautify, Inspire, and Empower. And the power of art can give voice to the voiceless,” said Golden. “Art has the ability to convey emotions, ideas, and experiences in a way that words alone cannot. It can be a powerful tool for self-expression and communication, especially for those who may not have access to other forms of representation or have been marginalized by society.”

my art gives me a voice is the second in a series of murals from a 2021-2022 grant from SEPTA to create projects on SEPTA properties. The third of these murals will be dedicated on Cuthbert Street between 20th and 21st streets in the spring. This partnership between SEPTA and Mural Arts will continue with two projects at Jefferson Station and in an underpass at 21st and Cuthbert streets, both of which will be completed in the summer.

To learn more about Color Me Back, click here.

 

  • Bill Webster, Chief Communications Officer at SEPTA, speaks at the My Art Gives Me A Voice dedication © 2023 City of Philadelphia Mural Arts Program / Lisa Kelley, Suburban Station. Photo by Steve Weinik. January 17, 2023.

  • Artist Lisa Kelly speaks at the My Art Gives Me A Voice dedication © 2023 City of Philadelphia Mural Arts Program / Lisa Kelley, Suburban Station. Photo by Steve Weinik. January 17, 2023.

  • Color Me Back Site Coordinator Michael Belo speaks at the My Art Gives Me A Voice dedication © 2023 City of Philadelphia Mural Arts Program / Lisa Kelley, Suburban Station. Photo by Steve Weinik. January 17, 2023.

  • Anthony McLaughlin, Chief of Innovation and Effectiveness: Planning Innovation Division at DBHIDS speaks at the My Art Gives Me A Voice dedication © 2023 City of Philadelphia Mural Arts Program / Lisa Kelley, Suburban Station. Photo by Steve Weinik. January 17, 2023.

  • My Art Gives Me A Voice Dedication © 2023 City of Philadelphia Mural Arts Program / Lisa Kelley, Suburban Station. Photo by Steve Weinik. January 17, 2023.

  • My Art Gives Me A Voice Dedication © 2023 City of Philadelphia Mural Arts Program / Lisa Kelley, Suburban Station. Photo by Steve Weinik. January 17, 2023.

Last updated: Jan 20, 2023

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