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Angela Rivers Visit
Revisiting Murals, Animating Neighborhoods
Chicago-based artist Angela Rivers will be visiting Champaign-Urbana from October 12-17 to facilitate conversations about memories and visions of north Champaign and the mural at Fifth and Park Streets.
Rivers designed and executed the Park Street mural in 1978 to honor her own family’s long history in Champaign County. Since then, she has been an arts educator and consultant.
All events are free and open to the public.
Monday, October 12
1-3 PM Walkathon past the Mural, Booker T. Washington Elementary School, 606 E. Grove St., Champaign. Organized by the Booker T. Washington Parent-Teacher Association
Tuesday, October 13
3:30-5:30 PM Neighborhood Memory Workshop, Conference Room, Douglass Branch Library, 504 E. Grove St., C. Free and open to the public. Registration is free, but call 217-333-7094 so we know how many to expect.
Wednesday, October 14
1:06-1:50 PM Interview with Angela Rivers on WILL Radio’s The Afternoon Magazine with host Celeste Quinn (580AM)
5:00-6:00 PM Meet at the Mural: Informal Discussion about the Mural and its Themes with the artist and others involved, corner of Fifth and Park Streets, C.
Thursday, October 15
5:15-7:00 PM Public Lecture: “Revisiting Murals, Animating Neighborhoods,” Mumford Hall 103, 1301 W. Gregory Dr., Champaign on the south quad, C. Free and open to the public.
Sponsored by the Frances P. Rohlen Visiting Artists Fund of the
College of Fine and Applied Arts
with additional support from the
Community Informatics Initiative
University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
September 25, 2009/Champaign, Illinois, USA
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Chicago-based Artist to Hold UIUC Residency
To commemorate the thirty-first anniversary of the mural at Fifth and Park Streets in Champaign, its
creator, Angela M. Rivers, will visit Champaign-Urbana during the week of October 12, 2009. She will
facilitate various activities related to community history and memory in the North End, culminating with a
lecture centered on the mural and its importance. Ms Rivers, an artist and educator based in Chicago, has
worked at different times as an administrator, curator, educator, and consultant for various educational and
cultural organizations and museums in central Illinois, the Chicago metropolitan area, and Dallas, Texas,
including the Art Institute of Chicago, the Field Museum of Natural History, the DuSable Museum of
African American History and the Dallas Museum of Art.
Ms. River's visit, funded primarily by the Frances P. Rohlen Visiting Artists Fund of the UI College of Fine
and Applied Arts with additional support from the Community Informatics Initiative, is a collaboration
with Ryan Griffis, Assistant Professor in the School of Art and Design, Sharon Irish, of the School of
Architecture and the Community Informatics Initiative, Ken Salo, of the Department of Urban and
Regional Planning, and Sam Smith, the Engagement Director at Krannert Center for the Performing Arts.
The following events are free and open to the public.
• Monday, Oct. 12, 1-3 pm, Walkathon past the Mural, Booker T. Washington Elementary School,
606 E. Grove St., C. Organized by the Booker T. Washington Parent-Teacher Association
Rivers will discuss her own memories and her family's history of involvement with the school.
• Tuesday, Oct. 13, 3:30-5:30 pm, Neighborhood memory workshop at Douglass Branch Library,
Conference Room, Douglass Branch Library, 504 E. Grove St., C. Registration is free, but call
217-333-7094 so we know how many to expect.
Rivers will lead people of all ages in creating visual memory maps of their North End
neighborhood as they remember it, with the help of some archival materials and photographs.
Participants will have the opportunity to share their stories with the group, celebrating memories
of the city throughout different eras. There will be a scanner available to digitize images and
• Wednesday, Oct. 14, 1:06-1:50 pm Rivers will be featured on WILL-AM Radio’s Afternoon
Magazine with Celeste Quinn (580 on your radio) Call in!
• Wednesday, Oct. 14, 5:00-6:00 pm
On-location discussion of the Park St. mural entitled "The History of African Americans in
Champaign County" with the artist. The mural is located at the corner of Fifth and Park Streets,
Champaign, IL. Meet with the artist and other community members to discuss the importance of
the mural in the community and memories of the area.
• Thursday, Oct. 15, 5:15-7 pm Public lecture, 103 Mumford Hall, 1301 W. Gregory Dr., C., on the
south quad; parking in the ramp and adjacent lots is free after 5 pm in most cases.
In an illustrated talk, “Re-visiting Murals, Animating Neighborhoods,” Rivers will tell the history
of the mural, which she designed and directed, ultimately finishing it by herself.
The mural represents an important part of the history of the African-American community in Champaign
County. It was conceived and created by the artist as part of the Comprehensive Employment Training Act
(CETA) in 1978. Although now badly deteriorated, the 16 x 64-foot mural will be revisited in discussions
and digital images, as Ms. Rivers meets with people of all ages in north Champaign and on the UIUC
campus in October 2009. http://www.cii.illinois.edu/rivers
Sharon Irish, Community Informatics Initiative, Graduate School of Library and Information Science, 501
E. Daniel, Champaign, IL email@example.com; 217-333-7094