The Free Paint Murals are located next to the entrance of Pretzel Park in Manayunk, Philadelphia, at the intersection of Cresson and Cotton Streets.
The murals were made in 2020 using community paintings created at a free event in the neighborhood. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, social distancing regulations were in effect. Participants painted one at a time, providing thoughtful contributions, and reading and interacting with the markings and words left by others. Over a five hour period, approximately 200 individuals participated. Began in 2019, the communal nature of Free Paint gained poignancy during 2020. These murals are a testament to what can be achieved together despite obstacles and uncertainty.
The material produced at the event was repurposed into strips that make up the mural. The composition alternates between bold stripes of solid color, and panels made from community paintings.
The goal of Free Paint is to offer a platform for expression and to make art in an inclusive and accessible way.
The murals were made possible with the support of the Manayunk Development Corporation.
Photos by Patricia Swanson