For immediate release:
(Cleveland, Ohio – October 2, 2007) Students at Lincoln-West High School, a part of the Cleveland Metropolitan School District (CMSD), will participate in the collaborative creation of a mural to be painted on the south side of the school together with internationally-acclaimed painter and pop culture icon Lee Quiñones, October 3 through October 13. The mural will be unveiled in a public, outdoor event Saturday, October 13 at 2:30 pm at Lincoln-West High School, 3202 West 30th Street, Cleveland.
Quiñones is also scheduled to speak at Oberlin College in Oberlin, Ohio where he will present slides of his work this Friday, October 5 at 4:30 pm in the West Lecture Hall of The Oberlin Science Center, 119 Woodland St. at Lorain (OH-511), on the Oberlin campus. This free event is open to the public.
Lee Quiñones (b. 1960, Ponce de Leon, Puerto Rico) has been painting since the 1970s, first on New York City’s streets and subway cars, and then shifting to a studio-based practice. Along with Keith Harring and Jean-Michel Basquiat, Quiñones was one of the key innovators during the early days of New York’s street-art movement. In keeping with his tradition of innovation, Quiñones was also one of the first street artists to transition away from creating murals on trains and begin creating canvas-based paintings. The 1979 exhibition of his canvases at Claudio Bruni’s Galleria La Medusa in Rome introduced street art to the rest of the world. In 1981 he starred in the influential hip-hop film Wild Style and helped introduce the burgeoning New York hip-hop scene to the world. He was also featured in Blondie’s “Rapture” music video. He was a 2004 VH1 Hip-Hop Honors honoree and co-presenter with Debbie Harry of Blondie and Fab 5 Freddy.
He has had numerous solo shows and has exhibited internationally. Quiñones is an inductee of the permanent collection at the Whitney Museum of American Art (NYC). His work has been featured in world-renowned venues including The New Museum Of Contemporary Art (NYC), Museum of National Monuments (Paris, France), Museum of Modern Art (NYC), and the Institute for North American Studies (Barcelona, Spain). All of the paintings in his recent show at the famed P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center in New York were purchased by legendary musician Eric Clapton, a long-time fan of Quiñones’ work.
In 2005, he took a 1,500 mile bike trip from New York City to Miami, Florida to raise money for Hurricane Katrina victims through the Boys and Girls Clubs of America. Artwork he created during his journey was featured in a Miami exhibit that donated the proceeds to Katrina relief.
The Lincoln-West mural project is a part of Progressive Arts Alliance’s Murals in the Schools program that conducts in-school residencies that work with students of all ages to create a mural for their school. Students and their teachers engage in a dynamic group project that creates a mural collaboratively with a professional mural artist from Progressive Arts Alliance (PAA). Mural-making allows students to learn about teamwork, problem solving, mathematics, and art through experiential learning. Students learn about the powerful impact of community revitalization through the arts. Other CMSD schools that have PAA murals include Orchard School, Michael R. White School, and George Washington Carver School.
“I think it’s great that someone is finally coming to fix our mural on the outside of our building,” explained Jose Pagañ, 11th grader at Lincoln-West, referring to a peeling, dilapidated mural that will be replaced by the project. He added, “It’s also great that Lee Quiñones is coming to work with us.”
Support for the Lincoln-West mural project has been provided by The Thomas H. White Foundation, The Abington Foundation, and Baker-Nord Center for the Humanities, Case Western Reserve University.