"lifting up the children of our community"

The Role of the Artist as Peacemaker in Community Based Art

Since the dawn of the human condition, people have wanted to show the values of their particular groups by visually expressing themselves. From the earliest moments of history these expressions started as images on a wall. The art form was pretty much unchanged in execution until Aug. of 1967, when 21 artists collaborated with the Wall of Respect in Chicago. There, for the first time was a visual art piece that united a neighborhood, and informed people about the common ground they all shared.
Since then the process of creating these ‘neighborhood murals’ have brought together whole neighborhoods, and maintained a format for the community dialogue to continue. Bro. Mark’s lecture will retrace the history of this movement in America. He will bring out specific examples of how the artists brought peace to these same neighborhoods through Art. Lastly, Bro. Mark will review the process as to how the artist works with a community to promote the common ground and peace

Bro. Mark Elder, cm (aka Buffalo Bro) is an Instructor of Art at DePaul University in Chicago. He holds two postgraduate degrees (both in painting), but started out with a Physical Education degree from his alma mater, DePaul Univ. Even though he enjoyed coaching and teaching at the High School level, Bro. Mark felt that the Spirit was calling him to higher work through the Visual Arts. Which is why he started Art School at 35 years of age.
Today at 57, and born in 1953 in Quantico VA, Bro. Mark has several public murals to his credit. Having one in Rome, and a few scattered around the Midwest, We Are DePaul 2 (which can be seen from the Fullerton ‘L’ stop. ) is one of four murals that Bro. Mark has done in Chicago. You can view more of Bro. Mark’s artwork at http://www.condor.depaul.edu/~melder.

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