CRP would like to extend its sincerest appreciation to the city of Oakland for attempting to address blight in East Oakland and involve talented artists such as Dan Fontes, the Estria Foundation and our organization. However, Governor Jerry Brown’s decision to cut state redevelopment agencies, thereby throwing cities all over California into limbo, has left these projects with an uncertain future at best. Even more tragic is the fact these mural projects had run the gauntlet of bureaucratic red tape; they awaited only City Council approval when they were cut. But if new funding isn’t identified and earmarked, these projects will simply disappear, as if they never existed.
The murders of Trayvon Martin and Shaima Alawadi have capped a recent spate of attacks on unarmed people of color which also include Rahmarlee Graham, who was unarmed when shot by police in his own home, and Kenneth Chamberlain, who was shot in his home by police responding to a medical call. Trayvon’s murder has sparked massive outrage due to the Stanford (Fla.) police’s unwillingness to arrest his admitted shooter, George Zimmerman. Shaima Alawadi was a mother of five children, murdered with a note beside her accusing her of being a terrorist simply for being Iraqi. No one in any of these cases has been charged with a crime.
In solidarity with the Oakland General Strike and the Liberate Oakland Movement, the Community Rejuvenation Project is proud to present our latest mural, “Sprouted Prayers: Underground Resistance.” The project reflects the prayers of our ancestors manifesting in our placement in the struggle today.
As part of an ongoing partnership between People’s Grocery and the Community Rejuvenation Project, CRP artists Mike Threesixty and Desi W.O.M.E were commissioned to create four new portraits at the People’s Garden at California Hotel, as part of their MLK Day of Service.