Thursday, November 5, 2009

Hubbard Street Murals

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Hubbard Street Murals ..
These murals are painted on the concrete train embankments on Hubbard Street between Ogden and Desplaines Avenues ..

The murals were originally painted during the 1970s ... In 1971, Ricardo Alonzo, an Art Institute graduate received permission from Northwest Railway to paint murals on one mile stretch of embankment running from Ogden Avenue and Halsted on Hubbard Street. The project lasted 8 years, and involved over 500 people from throughout Chicagoland, before eventually losing funding in 1979. Over time, they became to be known as "Hubbard Street Murals" ...

In 2000, the Union Pacific Railroad made the decision to begin repairing and reinforcing the aging concrete train embankment, and in the process destroyed much of the original art work ... Conscious of the importance of the murals they began looking for people to stage another public works project at the site. "City at Work" was started by Karen Smith and Fred Montano to do just that. They organized volunteers for the Hubbard Street Mural project [HSMP] to restore some panels and bring new artwork to the refurbished embankment. The new murals maintain some of the original themes: wildlife, endangered species, ethnicity, and Chicago history ...

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Since there are many images, I am posting them in a series:

# Hubbard Street Murals - II [Between N. Milwaukee Street and N. Peoria Street]
# Hubbard Street Murals - III [Between N. Peoria Street and N. Carpenter Street]
# Hubbard Street Murals - IV [Between N. Carpenter Street and N. May Street]
# Hubbard Street Murals - V [Between N. May Street and N. Racine Avenue]
# Hubbard Street Murals - VI [Between N. Racine Avenue and N. Ogden Avenue]...

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# The Hubbard Street Murals .. click here ..
# The Hubbard Street Mural project .. click here ..


Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing this!
Many volunteers have worked on these murals. This is a type of public art that needs to be encouraged. Thank You.
- Steve Johnson.

Daniel Cascardo said...

Great to see that the Hubbard Street Mural Project is still going strong. I am happy to have participated in the project over the years in collaboration with the Dearborn Public Schools Art Resource Teacher Wendy Sample and students from Fordson, Edsel Ford, and Dearborn High School. I will cherish the fond memories of collaborating with such a diverse group of creative individuals and I am happy to have contributed to the wonderful array of Public Art in Chicago.
Grow Peace
-Daniel Cascardo

Steven said...

Great Public Art projects.
Does anyone have photos of the Clipper Piggyback trailers that were painted under the direction of Ricardo Alonzo ?
Please contact me, I am collecting them.

Carolina Blanco said...

Thanks so much for posting this pictures of The Hubbard Street Murals.
I was one of the artists whose mural was completed in the summer of 2005. The previous year I had participated restoring panels and helping other artist to complete their murals. Then in April of 2005 City at Work invited artist to submit artwork for the Murals to be completed that year. My submission was accepted and in June 2005 I started painting the Mural. My mural depicts a group of seals on a rock. It was definitely a pleasure and an honor to work with such dedicated group of artist and volunteers.

Karen Smith said...

Nice to see that you all remember and continue to appreciate the creative energy and collaborative efforts of this mural project. And if anyone is interested in picking up where we left off, please contact me through my Two Ponyz Ranch facebook page.
Love and light,
Karen Smith