New Mural Project Celebrates History of Lansing's Genesee Neighborhood

A mural is being painted on the east wall of the Black Child and Family Institute (BCFI) in Lansing to honor the past, present and future of the Genesee Neighborhood. The lower portion of the wall is a collection of silhouettes painted by the BCFI fine art camp this summer. Local artists, volunteers and neighbors have been working into the night to prime, paint and trace the rest of the design.

“[Last Tuesday,] from 9:00 p.m. until about midnight the design was traced onto the wall,” says Jeana-Dee Allen, community building assistant at Northwest Initiative (NWI). “We used four extension cords, donated scaffolding, wax pencils, a projector and laptop and a few cups of coffee. Tracing went smoothly thanks to good weather and positive attitudes.”

The overall sponsorship for this project is estimated at $10,000, including artists stipends, supplies, materials and in-kind time and equipment.

"This project and the other youth murals I’ve been involved with are important for the Lansing community because they not only create more beauty in our city, but also because of how that beauty is created — by involving youth and neighbors in the design and production and offering mentoring and learning opportunities," says Jessica Yorko with the NWI.

"There is substantial evidence showing that connection to and involvement in community projects and positive role models impacts how kids see themselves in relation to other people, and therefore their ambitions and decisions," she adds.

The project will hopefully be complete by the fall.

Source: Jeana-Dee Allen, Northwest Initiative

Writer: Suban Nur Cooley 

All Photographs © Dave Trumpie

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