For Kamelia Hristeva, founder and CEO of Green Star Movement, art is about more than paint on walls or the tedium that can come from piecing a mosaic together.
“It creates a sense of place making, a place that’s inclusive and inspiring,” said Hristeva, whose non-profit, art-focused group is responsible for murals, sculptures and mosaics on elementary schools and underpasses throughout the city
“When you beautify a place people care more, it connects to people and helps them connect to different communities and learn about them.”
Through the city’s 50×50 neighborhood art project, Green Star Movement has been involved in creating murals at 65th and 67th Streets and at Belmont and Kenmore Avenues as well as other artworks.
And now more artists will get the opportunity to showcase their art in the city through Chicago’s first public art plan, which aims to showcase and generate more artwork in public spaces.
Mayor Rahm Emanuel on Friday announced the plan – a collaboration between the city’s Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events, Department of Transportation, the Chicago Park District, Chicago Public Libraries and the Chicago Transit Authority among others.
“It’s the 50 year anniversary of the Wall of Respect and the Picasso sculpture. Those are reflection points for us in charting the history of Chicago and writing a new history,” the mayor said.
“We want to bring the city’s artists together to re-envision our spaces because they are places where we can bring people of different backgrounds together and create a common foundation.”