Community Engagement

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A New Community Arts Project!

Linden Murals of Empowerment

Linden Murals of Empowerment (LME) will capitalize on the power of community muralism to facilitate public dialogues and discussions about the preponderance of structural inequality and racism in Linden, a predominantly Black neighborhood in Columbus that suffers from the negative effects of institutionalized racism. LME will create 10 community-initiated murals in the neighborhood to foster civic participation, community healing, and youth empowerment between 2021-2023. LME will promote diversity, equity and racial justice by empowering youth of color in Linden. The team will strive to build up their self-esteem by cultivating their creativity and placing a high premium on their feelings and aspirations.

Contact Us

Questions for the LME team? Please email us at lme@osu.edu 

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Our mission is to promote civic participation, community healing and youth empowerment through community driven muralism in the neighborhood of Linden
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Past Events

Community Conversation - December 18, 2021

LME kicked off activities in Linden Life Fellowship with their inaugural community conversation. The event opened with a powerful slam poetry reading by Aní Mwalimu, a Columbus educator, artist, and entrepreneur. Guisela Latorre, LME's Principal Investigator, introduced the project and discussed muralism’s potential for community empowerment. Powerful testimonies came from community members who spoke about their hopes and dreams for Linden. Karen Clark, North Linden Area Commissioner, introduced the topic of implicit bias to the attendees. How does implicit bias affect perceptions of Linden in Columbus media reports and in public opinion? How are those perceptions affected by race? What parts of Linden are lost when implicit bias influences attitudes about the neighborhood? These important questions ignited passionate and insightful responses from the community.

Youth Arts Workshop - February 26, 2022

Lead artist Francesca Miller (assisted by Shelbi Toone) taught a youth arts workshop that sparked a love for creativity and social justice in her students. Taking place in the Linden Community Center, a bustling hub of neighborhood activity, young participants learned about Columbus’s mural history and about their own potential as future muralists. To capture their unique perspectives, Francesca asked her students to define what Linden means to them. They were honest about the challenges in the community such as poverty, gun violence, homelessness, and other problems. But the young artists also beamed with pride when talking about Linden’s resiliency, unity, strength, and diversity. With these thoughts in mind and with markers and pencils in hand, these young creatives began to put their words into inspiring images. The LME team were delighted with these young artists and with a surprise visit from Robert W. Clark, Columbus’s Director of Public Safety.

Youth sketching ideas at workshop
Girls participate in Youth Arts Workshop
We can stop gun violence in Linden photo
youth art from workshop
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Guisela Image
Guisela Latorre Professor, Ohio State Department of Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies
Njeri Photo
Njeri Kagotho Associate Professor, Ohio State College of Social Work
Becca image
Becca Beech Graduate Student, Ohio State College of Social Work & John Glenn College of Public Administration, LME Outreach Coordinator

 

Francesca Photo
Francesca Miller, Freelance Visual Artist, All People Arts, LME Lead Artist

 

Andrea Image
Andrea Russell North Linden Area Commission & Linden Resident, LME Community Liaison 

 

Shelbi Photo
Shelbi Toone, All People Arts, LME Artist and Muralist

 

Karen Photo
Karen Hutzel Professor and Dean, University of North Texas
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Linden Youth Arts Workshop

When: Saturday April 30th, 2pm-5pm

Where: Linden Community Center

What: Join us for a hands-on creative session that will inspire community murals in Linden. No art skills necessary! Meal included

Sign Up Here

 

About this event

If you are between the ages of 14-20 years old and you live or attend school in Linden, you are welcome! Joel Cross, a successful artist from Linden will guide you through this workshop meant to bring out the inner artist in you. You and other students in the workshop will collaboratively create the final mural design for Linden Murals of Empowerment! You will also be invited to help us help paint this mural in the spring!

Parental permission will be required for anyone under the age of 18. Parents must sign the consent form ahead of time or be readily available on the day of the event.

Meal to be provided on the day of the event.

Murals are more than just art, they are community empowerment. Come be a voice for Linden!

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LME is made possible through grants from the Global Arts and Humanities Discovery Theme and the Seed Fund for Racial Justice.