Artists transform exterior of Jessie Ball duPont Center – The Florida Times-Union

Two murals, a mosaic and a photography installation will transform the look of the Jessie Ball duPont Center in downtown Jacksonville over the next few weeks.
The projects — one each on Forsyth and Adams streets and two on the soon-to-be-transformed loading dock side of the building — are part of a series of murals going up around downtown Jacksonville that salute the city’s African American and minority heritage.
A triptych by Celso González is going up in three curved alcoves along Forsyth Street. Each mosaic will contain two portraits done in black, white and gray tiles.
One will depict the late author Zora Neale Hurston and Jacksonville poet and performer Ebony Payne-English. Another will show the late civil rights leader Rutledge Pearson and Jacksonville historian and author Rodney L. Hurst. The third will feature the late educator, soprano and humanitarian Eartha M.M. White and Jacksonville educator Johnnetta Cole, former director of the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of African Art.
A mural on the Adams Street face of the building will show a light representing hope for Latin Americans living in the United States. It will be painted by Puerto Rican muralist Alexis Diaz
The alleyway behind the building, running between Forsyth and Adams streets, will be opened up as part of the project. Jacksonville Beach artist Jennifer Lail will paint murals on both sides of an overhead wall and Jacksonville native Christopher Parsons will create a photography installation and a creative film that will be projected in the building’s loading bay area.
The Jessie Ball duPont Center is in the former Haydon Burns Library building and is home to 19 nonprofit organizations. Jacksonville-based creative agency ArtRepublic is organizing the art projects, along with a series of 50 murals on Jacksonville buildings and bridges.
“It’s no longer enough for an organization to simply commission artwork,” Jessica Santiago, curator at ArtRepublic, said at a news conference announcing the project. “They must actively work to tell the story of all of our community.”  
The projects are slated to be finished in time for a Lift Every Voice Mural Project ceremony from 3 to 10 p.m. Oct. 24 at the center. The event will feature live music and speakers, mural tours and Parsons’ projections on the center and the Prime Osborn Convention Center. 
ArtRepublic has also created an app for iPhone and Android devices that includes an interactive map showing where all the murals are located.

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