Thursday, September 14, 2006

Murals by day, murals by night

Playing with paint is always fun. After July's mural project with the Boys and Girls Club, Dan Sherman was exhausted but happy. He set his sights on the next project, a wall of our favorite local business - Le Bakery.

Fast forward to 13 September and the latest mural project is underway with the Jackson (MS) artist William Goodman, VI. The metaphorically inauspicious clouds that hung over the 12th materialized into grey, water laden clouds that plagued the mural painters sporadically throughout the day.

Early in the day, William was able to spray paint the outline of the design. By early afternoon, most of it was complete and the small team of painters had begun filling in the squares. The threat of rain hung in the clouds all day, but struck with guerilla-like intensity and surprise in the late afternoon. With sun shining 500 feet away, the rain washed out the freshly painted colors that hadn't dried yet.

Not to be bested by a little runny paint, Hands On volunteers go the distance. So after dinner, a crew of ten or so people went back to the mural to make their best effort to have the wall prepared for the 13 or so kids from the Boys and Girls Club who were supposed to arrive at 9am to paint their pictures inside some of the bigger squares.

Sue, one of the owners of Le Bakery, was out watching her wall transform from drab white primer into an awesome array colors. She bought pizzas for the crew; her excited smile revealed the impact the progress was having on her.

I was excited, too. It was just one of those nights in East Biloxi where the air carried a cool breeze and a focused intensity of volunteers hell-bent on making a positive impact on Biloxi's visible spaces. I sighed a sigh of joy that despite the rain and the sadness of yesterday's departures, we've still got the drive and enthusiasm that helps residents and business bounce back from Katrina's devastation.

:: Chris ::

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