Weaving Change Beyond the Shadows

  • In the mural, a series of diverse figures representing individuals from the local Washington Heights community are connected by a long, beautiful cloth.
  • The community gathers around the mural design during the public sharing to take pictures and discuss the potential impact of “Weaving Change Beyond the Shadows” on the Washington Heights community.
  • Painting a mural this size requires all the participants working together like moving parts to a finely tuned machine.
  • Two youth stop painting to smile for a picture.
  • Groundswell invited the neighborhood to a fun Community Painting Day.
  • A detailed image of the right side of the building, highlighting the intricacies in the cloth and the emotive expressions on three figure’s faces.
Celebrating 15 years of art and social changeDCTV - The Wall: Freedom of Expression

Project Description

Together with the Community League of the Heights (CLOTH) and American Friends Service Committee, Groundswell youth explored alternatives to violence and peace promotion to create “Weaving Change Beyond the Shadows” in Washington Heights. The mural team of 15 youth was led by artists Crystal Bruno and Frank Parga. The team interviewed victims of gun violence and their families. With their stories as a starting point, and CLOTH’s building as a canvas, the young people created a vision for a more peaceful future. Depicted in the mural are a series of diverse figures representing individuals from the local Washington Heights community. A long, beautiful cloth connects these figures. The cloth is whole in some places, torn in others. By standing together, the figures take responsibility to mend the fabric and restore peace to their community.

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Project Info

Fun Facts

Legend Symbol
Ujima. A Swahili principle highlighting collective work and shared responsibility.
Guns are responsible for the deaths of nearly 30,000 Americans each year – the equivalent of an entire New York City marathon.
Leveraging the young people's work against gun violence, the dedication for this mural acted as the backdrop for a press conference against proposed legislation to overturn New York's concealed carry laws by allowing concealed carry reciprocity.