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EAST LANSING, Mich. – Members of the media and community are invited to the dedication ceremony for a new, student-created public art mural in downtown East Lansing’s Grove Street Alley this Friday, Nov. 3 at 3:30 p.m.The mural, entitled “A Colorful Melange: We All Belong Here,” was created by a group of eight talented students from the Michigan State University Department of Art, Art History and Design (AAHD). As part of their Public Art: Understanding and Practice class, taught by MSU AAHD Associate Professor Benjamin Duke this past summer, the students traveled to New York City, Grand Rapids and Detroit to view significant pieces of public art and then returned to create their own public art piece for the City of East Lansing. The class covered all aspects of production, including generating a theme, sourcing the image, putting together a professional public art proposal and creating and installing the art. The student artists include Salvador Carrillo, Summer Rain Dawdy-Allen, Cami Ernst, Leila Michelle Malekadeli, Ciera Marie Joy Mckay, Peter James Shutt, Richard Aaron Tanner and Alyssa Mary Thornton.“It was an honor to witness the eight artists who took on the challenge of this project developing a sense of camaraderie and community throughout the creative process. They truly worked together as a team to make a mural celebrating East Lansing,” said MSU AAHD Associate Professor Benjamin Duke. “I think their hard work exemplifies the best of what community building can be and I look forward to seeing them develop their art.”This latest mural project was supported by the East Lansing Downtown Development Authority (DDA) as a continuation of the 2016 East Lansing Artist Alleys placemaking project. As part of the EL Artist Alleys project, “The Spirit of East Lansing: Sounds from the Streets” public art mural by local artist Julian Van Dyke was installed in the Grove Street Alley last year. The new student-created mural has been installed next to Van Dyke’s mural, creating an artful passageway for pedestrians traveling between the Grove Street Garage and Ann Street Plaza.“This student-created mural is a great addition to our growing public art offerings in downtown East Lansing,” said DDA Chair Peter Dewan. “This project was unique in that it drew on the talent of up-and-coming MSU student artists and helped to further connect them to the community. I know I speak on behalf of the entire DDA when I say it was an honor to support them in their creative endeavors.”The Grove Street Alley is located between the Grove Street Garage, 330 Grove St., and Ann Street Plaza (corner of Albert and M.A.C. avenues) in downtown East Lansing.Check out this video of the students creating the mural: https://www.facebook.com/benjamin.duke.39/videos/10155694347652500/.
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