Soundview Library Mural

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Artwork showing man playing jazz trumpet over a bridge and river in the Bronx

This project is an expression of our mission to facilitate culturally responsive, multidisciplinary art programs for students, teaching artists, and communities to develop and amplify their voices and creative skills. It is in this intersection of culture, art, and generational wisdom where radical love takes root.

“What did you hear and what did you see on your way to the library today?” Each creative session began with that question. “What makes you float?” was another question posed, as a way of exploring happiness metaphorically and visually.

Using all five senses, the group explored ways to illustrate their observations through visual art and poetry. As they worked weaving together their images and their words, they created a Spotify playlist of music that inspired them. They discovered the recently released album, Soundview, by jazz trumpeter and Soundview native, Bruce Harris. It became the soundtrack for their collaboration.

If you look closely at the mural you will see Bruce making a cameo, his notes floating over the community, bridging the diverse cultures of the South Bronx. In October, Bruce spoke with the Soundview community artists at their mural reveal: “If you are growing up in Soundview and Clason Point, you’ve got Black people and Latino people. So we hear hip-hop and jazz, and then we hear salsa music. That’s the fusion. And that’s the fusion that’s in this song.”

“I can still picture the visual metaphor Bruce gave,” says Teaching Artist Moira-Jo, “to illustrate how Soundview is a ‘through compose’ where a theme does not repeat and it ends in a different place from where it started. He said it was like riding a bus through the Bronx – ‘everything you see, peaks, valleys, different colors, moods, shapes, sounds’ – moving through all the neighborhoods.”

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