MLK

MOUNT HOPE — A Harmony for Hope partnership with Charleston officials will allow local residents to create art pieces for contribution to a Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. mural in the capital city.

According to Carrie Kidd, founding executive director of Harmony for Hope, the organization will stage an in-person workshop on Saturday, July 3 at 6 p.m. The two-hour workshop will teach viewers how to create self-portraits that will become part of the Martin Luther King Jr. mural at the Martin Luther King Jr. Community Center in Charleston, according to Kidd.

The workshop will be held at the Harmony for Hope Center, located at 704 Main Street in Mount Hope. It is free and open to the public, and supplies will be provided. All ages are welcome, and no art experience is required.

"We may be outside and suggest you dress appropriately for the weather the day of the event," said Kidd.

The City of Charleston announced the community mural project last year, but it was slowed by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Harmony for Hope staff/volunteers will be on hand Saturday to help walk attendees through a pre-recorded, virtual public art workshop, which was originally made available last fall by Jeff Pierson, director of Charleston's Office of Public Art.

All workshop materials will be made available to attendees on a first-come, first-served basis. Pre-register to reserve materials at https://forms.gle/QVSgniLzx5UVmncy7.

"Offering an opportunity for these children to take part in the MLK mural will be something they can share with their children and grandchildren," said Kidd. "This one project will imprint a legacy of unity through art for decades to come."

The program has support through a grant from the West Virginia Department of Arts, Culture and History via funding made available by the National Endowment for the Arts.

Also this weekend, Colette Miller, of Los Angeles, Calif. and known for The Global Angel Wings Project, is scheduled to install her newest pair of wings locally beginning the morning of July 3, according to Kidd. Located on the side of the Historic Garrett & McNabb Block in Mount Hope, The Global Angel Wings mural is a photo opportunity that will be easily accessible to visitors entering a gateway city to the New River Gorge National Park and Preserve. Parking in the adjacent gravel lot or while taking a stroll on the Active Southern West Virginia Historic Walking Trail provides visitors with an opportunity to experience the Global Angel Wings Project.

"Meeting a mural street artist who honed her skills in the foothills of Appalachia then taking her vision to the streets of the world will engage our children in a once-in-a-lifetime experience," Kidd said. "We hope it will be an experience that ignites a passion for art and their community for decades to come."

After the workshop concludes, Harmony for Hope representatives will collect all of the art pieces created at the event and deliver them to the Public Office of Art in Charleston. They will be installed at the Martin Luther King Jr. Community Center on Sept. 15 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and Sept. 17 from 5 to 7 p.m.

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