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"HereStories" Community Group

HereStories Mission Statement

Art is the birthright of every human being on the planet. At HereStories, we’re dedicated to producing public art projects that celebrate that joyful fact. Our long-term goal is for every person in the city of Berkeley to contribute artistically to the public space.

HereStories produces public art projects that bring people together in a fun and interactive environment where every person’s voice is honored. While sharing stories, learning about community history, and creating art, the participants have the time to get to know each other and build lasting relationships. When the process of creation is over, the public art remains in that place to share the experience with every person who passes by.

Support HereStories

There are many projects percolating at HereStories and we are open to hearing your ideas as well. Contact us at Epic Arts to find out more.Support HereStories by purchasing our book:

HereStories: Murals Based on the Community History of South Berkeley $20.00

Inside this full color 26 page book, you will find ten 7” x 7” reproductions of the historical murals, ten stories of South Berkeley history based on personal interviews of elders, descriptions and pictures of the student murals, and a unique introduction that depicts the bumpy journey from vision stage to completion of this unique public art project.

To order the book, send an email to sara@epicarts.org with your name and the number of copies you would like. Or, stop by Epic Arts and purchase a book there. Please make all checks out to Epic Arts – HereStories fund.

South Berkeley Senior Stories Murals

Social Clubs Support Social Justice by muralist Clayton Anderson

To see the most recent HereStories project, take a trip to Malcolm X Elementary School at the corner of Ashby Avenue and King Street in Berkeley. On the playground fence you will see the South Berkeley Senior Stories Murals. This outdoor art gallery consists of twenty 4 ft. x 4 ft. paintings that depict stories from the community history of South Berkeley. Mounted on the fence next to each mural is a laminated sign that shares the story that inspired the painting.

More than 40 people contributed artistically to the South Berkeley Senior Stories Murals, including 14 elementary school students, 19 South Berkeley seniors, 11 adult muralists, and numerous volunteers. The 20 unique murals were installed in February 2007 in honor of Black History Month.

Louise Rosenkrantz, a teacher at Malcolm X School for 15 years, said at the opening celebration: “What I love about these murals is you can see that you have community all around. I love the way that it’s arranged so you have both professional muralists and student muralists… You just get this incredible sense that it is something that involves all generations and continues on and on and on.”

HereStories - Next Project

TURF-- a collaboration between Unconditional Theatre, Ten Red Hen Theater Company, Willard Middle School, and HereStories.
TURF is an after school program at Willard Middle School during the 2007-2008 school year. Students will create their own definitions of turf through interactive theater games, art projects, and discussion. As they investigate concepts like identity and belonging, they will conduct interviews and collect stories from the surrounding community, identifying points of connection and difference. Their explorations over the school year will culminate in a public performance at the Willard Metalshop Theater and a public art project.

TURF Team:
John Warren, Arts Coordinator, Unconditional Theatre www.untheatre.org
Maya Gurantz, Performing & Theatre Artist, Ten Red Hen www.tenredhen.net
George Rose, Site Coordinator, English/Social Studies Teacher Willard Middle School
Corey Cohen, Counselor Willard Middle School
Sara Bruckmeier, Visual Artist, HereStories

HereStories Links:

South Berkeley Senior Murals Story (Video)

HereStories in The Berkeley Daily Planet

Here Stories Staff: