Artist behind iconic Roxbury mural is keeping the faith

Artist behind iconic Roxbury mural is keeping the faith

(Alexandra Legend Siegel photo for boston.com)
Posted by Roy Greene April 11, 2011 04:15 PM

Gary Rickson painted the “Africa is the Beginning” mural on the side of the YMCA building on Warren Street in 1969. It is one of the last vestiges of a movement that gave Roxbury a place in black American history.
By Alexandra Legend Siegel, Globe Correspondent

Many Roxbury residents may have passed by the “Africa is the Beginning” mural on the side of the YMCA building on Warren Street with barely more than a curious stare.

But to those familiar with the Black Arts Movement of the late 1960s, the mural is a glowing treasure left over from an important era — one of the last vestiges of a movement that gave Roxbury a place in black American history.

The mural was painted by artist, poet and musician Gary Rickson in 1969, and was repainted by him in 2002, when the YMCA was remodeled. This month, Rickson, a pioneer of the Black Arts Movement, will return to the neighborhood to give a firsthand account of his experiences, in the hopes of motivating young artists, while also opening up lines of communication about black history and culture.

FULL STORY HERE
http://www.boston.com/yourtown/news/roxbury/2011/04/artist_behind_iconic_roxbury_m.html

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