Wall Words: 
The Unveiling
Oakland Super Heroes Mural Project
The unveiling of the second mural that took place last Wednesday was a beautiful and historical ceremony that will be remembered for generations. About 100 attendees filled Market Street under the 580 freeway, both young and old. 
The local artists who painted the mural were present, as well as the Westlake Middle School students who conceptually designed the Super Heroes. Over a dozen politicians were represented to support this successful and continued effort to showcase the talents and visions of Oakland youth and local artists.
The Eagle Village After School Program Students at Westlake Middle School who designed the Super Heroes on the mural
KQED, KPFA, Channel 2 News, The Oakland Post, Oakland Local, and World Journal came out to capture the words and feelings evoked by the mural. Thank you for recording this historical event and spreading the voices of the Oakland community! 

Click here to see the coverage from The Oakland Post!
Amana Harris, OSH Project Director and Lead Artist, Refa Dennis, cutting the ribbon with the students!

Guillermo Ortiz began the unveiling by performing an ancient Native-American tradition of cleansing the area by lighting sage, known as smudging, and walking through the crowd. Afterwards, Kokomon Clottey, Executive Director of Attitudinal Healing Connection, introduced Amana Harris, Oakland Super Heroes Project Director. 

The Westlake Middle School Principal, Mr. Karigaca, and Eagle Village After School Program Coordinator, Valorie Hutson, expressed how honored they were to be involved in AHC's work and emphasized the importance of our partnership to provide students with unique and powerful opportunities such as these.

They were then followed by 3 students who came up and reflected on what the mural meant for them. The crowd heard from both Art Director, David Burke, and Lead Artist, Refa Dennis, on the value of art in the community, power in the imaginations of youth, and employing local artists.

Harris closed the ceremony with acknowledging many mural donors and sponsors that made the work possible and led the cutting of the ribbon!

Attitudinal Healing Connection

Amana Harris, OSH Project Director, Mural Artists, and Students stand together behind the podium


 Amana Harris conveyed the importance of this project when interviewed by KQED: "How do we make sure that in 20 to 50 years from now, there is a landmark that says we were here, and our young people were here, and they had a way in which they wanted to see the world."  


 The vision is clear. The students' Super Heroes transform neglected parks into beautiful oases, protect spaces in the community from vandalism, encourage youth to re-examine their choices and to dream of better futures, and stop drug addiction. These students have provided the Oakland community with images that transform the atmosphere of the 580 freeway underpass.



The last few standing after the ceremony

Attitudinal Healing Connection plans on giving many more Oakland youth the chance to re-imagine themselves with super powers to help transform their lives and neighborhoods in positive ways! We will engage students and hire different local artists to create 5 more murals that will offset blight and bring vibrant energy to the dark underpasses that, at times, seem to mute the positive messages
and work being done in West Oakland.

A special thanks to Oakland Mayor Jean Quan, Oakland Council Members who were present, Dan Kalb of District 1 and Libby Schaaf of District 2, as well as Emeryville Council Member Kurt Brinkman, and Marlon McWilson and Sheila Jordan from Alameda County Office of Education, for their presence. 


We'd also like to acknowledge Casey Farmer and Brigitte Cook representing Lynette McElhaney, District 3 Council Member, Jacqueline Orpilla from Rob Bonta's office, Julie Waters from Nancy Skinner's office and Andre Jones from Rebecca Kaplan's office for coming to the event.



Help us restore hope and positively transform Oakland from the inside out by making a donation today! Stay tuned for our next update!



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