Gary Lichtenstein Editions, Ridgefield, CT
COLORES DE SAN JUAN
Celebrating the Working Men and Women of Puerto Rico
DieBond panels 48 by 96 being screwed onto a steel framework.
AP reporter Danica Coto joins us 30 ft up to cover the installation.
San Juan, Puerto Rico, October 7, 2016 - Despite all the bad press, talk of economic crisis and massive migration, good things are happening in the city of San Juan. The artist and
muralist Tom Christopher from New York, has created a series of murals depicting the Working Men and Women of Puerto Rico. Following in the footsteps of traditions formed by the
WPA artists, Thomas Hart Benton and Mexican muralists like Diego Rivera, these murals explore the struggle and the pride of the proletariat.
After over a year of work, the murals are now complete. The murals tell the story of the people who built and sustain the country's economy. Set in the beautiful light and brilliant colors of Puerto Rico, the paintings depict the honor in work well done. "From the city of San Juan to the rain forests and rural areas, the workers of Puerto Rico are celebrated in paint." Among the mural's many images are a sweeper at the Old San Juan capitol building, a construction crew at a housing project, a welder, linotype operator, an architect, plantation workers, a guitar player with a tip jar, a tour guide in the rain forest with girls taking a selfie, along with many other scenes of blue and white collar workers.
The murals are at Paseo Caribe, once an abandoned area in the heart of the San Juan, near Santurce, an area known for its street art. He also mentored a group of art students from the Escuela de Artes Plásticas y Diseño (Plastic Arts & Design School) in San Juan, in the creation of the more than 4,000 square feet of murals. Christopher established a studio on the Plaza where he and the students worked, inviting the public to observe the creation of art on a huge scale.
The students were involved in all aspects of mural creation, primarily the process of gathering information, forming ideas and realizing them on a large scale.
The Working Studio on the Plaza has made the students an integral part of the revitalization project for the neighborhood. "Paseo Caribe is now becoming a vibrant place where the public can view open studios with artists working," says Christopher.
The murals were commissioned by CPG Real Estate, a New York-based real estate company
that has expressed a commitment to the people of Puerto Rico."The citizens of Puerto Rico have an unparalleled work ethic and have managed to continue to celebrate life in the
face of great challenges." says Sam Kirschner, the CPG partner in charge of Paseo Caribe. "With Tom and the students leading the way, we want to pay homage to the working women
and men of Puerto Rico. We believe they are creating a work of art and beauty that the
people of Puerto Rico can take great pride in."
See more of the Paseo Caribe Mural Project