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Dispatches from the Field: Walking (and Painting) to School

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Friday, October 23, 2015:

Bike Walk Mississippi, the Jackson Mayors Office, and the Mississippi Museum of Art joined with Poindexter Elementary to celebrate Walk to School Day.

Photo by Arash Ghahramani

The day began with a walk to school when about fifty of Poindexter Elementary’s finest joined with Mayor Tony Yarber and Melody Thortis of Bike Walk Mississippi. They arrived at 8 AM in time to see Mississippi Museum of Art teaching artist daniel johnson getting down to work chalking the outlines for a mural they would complete later that day.

Photo by Arash Ghahramani

Over the next five hours, johnson and volunteers created a hard-edged abstract design of interweaving lines in the school colors of blue, gold and white. At 1 PM the students turned the white space running the length of the wall into a depiction of their neighborhood street.

Photo by Arash Ghahramani

The composition featured drawings of students’ houses, families and themselves on the way to school complete with the rainbows and flowers every child notices when they look out at their own landscape. For the Engagement and Learning Department at the Museum, this 150 foot long mural was time well spent – helping these West Jackson students project their own thoughts and story lines into their public space.