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Wednesday, December 19 , 2018, 4:53 am | Fair 43º


Public Unveiling Set for Wednesday of Eastside Library Mural

A ceremony to honor the completion and unveiling of a large 6-foot-by-80-foot-long mural at the Eastside Library as well as four smaller murals within the Franklin Youth Center will be held at 4 p.m. Wednesday at 1102 E. Montecito St.

The public is invited to attend to celebrate the completion of these mural art projects that both beautify the neighborhood and reflect the positive artistic opportunities for neighborhood teens.

The Santa Barbara Arts Alliance, a youth program led by the city’s Parks & Recreation Department, painted the murals over a seven-month period. The smaller murals were completed in October of last year, and the larger mural, “Libraries, Where Adventures Begin — En las Bibliotecas Empiezan las Aventuras,” was completed this March.

The mural pays homage to the importance of local libraries by depicting inspirational images, words and historic figures. It is a vibrant piece of artwork that beckons children and families to use their local library as a source of information and knowledge.

Manuel Unzueta is an international artist who has used Chicano and Mexican views to celebrate the union of these cultures within the American landscape. Youth artists for this project include Reyna Sanchez, Alex Real, Saul Rangel, Thomas Zepeda, Danny Meza, Miguel Rodriguez and Luis Rodriguez.

The Santa Barbara Arts Alliance is a free, art-based after school mentoring program for 14- to 21-year-olds run by the city’s Parks & Recreation Department. It provides leadership and life skills development opportunities through hands-on community service projects that focus on neighborhood cleanups and graffiti abatement activities. The program curricula includes art workshops, field trips, community service projects and graffiti abatement as well as the creation and installation of a public mural as part of the youths’ ongoing efforts at reducing graffiti vandalism.

The Parks & Recreation Department would like to recognize the generosity of a number of funders who have helped make the Santa Barbara Arts Alliance program possible. Special thanks to the Orfalea Fund, the Community Development Human Services Committee, Friends of the Eastside Library, the Santa Barbara Foundation and the Santa Barbara County Arts Commission for a Community Arts Grant using funds provided by the City of Santa Barbara.

For more information, call Neighborhood and Outreach Services coordinator Ricardo Venegas at 805.897.2582.

— Ricardo Venegas is the Neighborhood & Outreach Services coordinator for the City of Santa Barbara.


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