Communion

Commissioned by the City of Philadelphia Mural Arts Program in partnership with Warrior Writers, 2012

This project brought the community together to support veterans, primarily post 9/11 veterans, returning to Philadelphia. Partnering with veterans organizations, universities, service providers, and community members, the project hosted a series of events including art and writing workshops for veterans, community discussions, exhibitions, and painting activities, which culminated in the creation of this landmark mural, located blocks away from the Veterans Administration Medical Center.

The goal of the project was to bring veterans, many of whom struggle in silence, into a conversation with fellow community members to share their stories and build a better network for troops returning home. The mural stretches across mirroring walls and reflects parallel worlds: wartime Baghdad and a picturesque Philadelphia homecoming. A viewer is asked to stand between these two walls and reflect and reconcile that space. Personal photographs, memories, and excerpts of poems penned by the veterans in the workshops were used as inspiration and imagery throughout the mural. This project was in collaboration with Warrior Writers and Willis Humphrey.