• The mural is expected to be complete in about two weeks.
• An unveiling is scheduled for 6 p.m. Aug. 16.
A 30-foot-tall, 50-foot-wide mural depicting the passing on of faith and wisdom from one generation to the other is the latest project the Glass House Collective is using to unify and raise up the Glass Street community.
“I helped paint it,” said 16-year-old Justin Palmer, who lives in the Glass Street neighborhood.
Shaun LaRose, an art teacher at Chattanooga Christian School, and Rondell Crier are the two professional artists leading the project that has included about 10 neighborhood children, other volunteer art students and two paid interns.
The Royal Society of Arts of the United States is funding the two paid interns to work on the mural to make sure nonprofessional artists get training and can do more murals throughout the city.
LaRose said he would like to see a three-year project involving the drawing of murals throughout Chattanooga.
“I want people who live in the neighborhood to be inspired,” said Crier.
The mural, located on the side of the old bank building at the intersection of Glass Street and North Chamberlain, shows a girl with dandelions, a boy with a book, an older woman knitting and another younger girl in deep thought.
The project also is funded by Glass House Collective and Art Place America.
LaRose said he believes it is the biggest mural in the city and may generate national attention because of funding from the Royal Society of Art, an international sponsor.
People honked their horns and yelled compliments about the mural as they drove by in their cars while LaRose and Laura Thatcher, a former LaRose student and volunteer, painted.
“Anyone can start something beautiful,” said Thatcher, 19. “And it brings people together.”
She said hope and positive change are the ideas she wants the mural to portray.
Justin said he especially likes the mural because it includes a depiction of his 12-year-old friend Nadia Berrien, who also lives in the Glass Street neighborhood.
It’s still a place with many boarded-up buildings and some crime, but it’s getting better, said Palmer.
“In five years it will be better than it ever has been,” he said.
Contact staff writer Yolanda Putman at 423-757-6431 or yputman@timesfree press.com.
Yolanda Putman has been a reporter at the Times Free Press for 11 years. She covers housing and previously covered education and crime. Yolanda is a Chattanooga native who has a master’s degree in communication from the University of Tennessee and a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Alabama State University. She previously worked at the Lima (Ohio) News. She enjoys running, reading and writing and is the mother of one son, Tyreese. She has also ...
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