At-Large Position 4
Super Bowl Community & Youth Public Art Mural Project
While growing up in Northwest Houston, art served as a critical creative outlet for Council Member Amanda Edwards. Inspired by her love of the arts, and understanding the connection between public art and empowerment drove her to partner with local artist Reginald C. Adams and the Houston Super Bowl Host Committee to engage youth and community members to further transform Houston communities with public art. Her desire to (1) empower youth and community members as artists with a prominent platform like Super Bowl LI, (2) transform their respective communities and (3) inspire Houstonians to widely embrace public art, manifested into the creation of four new public art murals in Acres Homes, Downtown, Midtown and Historic Third Ward - known as the Super Bowl Community & Youth Public Art Mural Project.
The murals garnered widespread local attention and inspired community and youth to create beautiful public art and take ownership of the creations that improve the landscape of their neighborhoods and bring the community together.
"READ" celebrates the legacy of the strong matriarchs who have kept the Acres Homes community knitted closely together, and delivers a simple yet powerful message on the importance of reading. The Acres Homes site was selected in partnership with Houston's First Daughter, Ashley Turner. Students from various Aldine ISD schools, church members of St. Monica Catholic Church and community members from Acres Homes and beyond painted the patchwork-inspired designs.
Designed by Reginald C. Adams in collaboration with 25 students from KIPP CONNECT Middle School in Southwest Houston, "Tree of Life" transforms Downtown Houston by depicting a 23-foot-tall urban garden on the corner of Rusk and Travis streets.
"Heart of a Champion" highlights eight of Houston's greatest professional athletes whose athletic accomplishments have raised the profile of Houston and inspired greatness in others. From Left to Right: Simone Manuel, Zina Garrison, Earl Campbell, Nolan Ryan, Hakeem Olajuwon, Simone Biles, Carl Lewis and George Foreman. Tennis great Zina Garrison - depicted in the mural - participated in the February 12th "Heart of a Champion" dedication!
Led by Amy Malkan, artist and CEO of The Malkan Group, in collaboration with Reginald C. Adams, "I Am Empowered" honors civic pioneers Norris Wright Cuney, Diane Sheffield and Louie Vincent, each of whom empowered and strengthened the Cuney Homes community. The children of Cuney Homes participated in both the design and execution of this mural.
Beyond Super Bowl LI
The dedication of each Super Bowl Community & Youth Public Art Mural touted an inspiring mix of excitement and pride. Young artists posed for pictures with their family members in front of the sections they helped to design and paint, while community leaders represented in the murals marveled in awe. Being able to see the fruits of their labor, now memorialized in their communities as part of Super Bowl LI, bestowed a gift on these artists that will echo long after the Super Bowl cheers have subsided. As Council Member Edwards remarked at the dedications, despite not suiting up in helmets and pads, the youth and community artists are officially and forever part of Super Bowl LI, and have transformed their neighborhoods, as well as the City of Houston.