'Helping Hands' mural unveiled, a work of art between SHARP Literacy and local students

NOW: ’Helping Hands’ mural unveiled, a work of art between SHARP Literacy and local students

MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- We could all use a helping hand from time to time, and a new mural in Milwaukee's Historic Bronzeville district is a reminder to everyone who passes it. 

It's on the corner of Garfield and Martin Luther King Drive. A colorful piece of art with 180 hands. Each hand is a message from the artist. 

Some of the messages are obvious like, 'help each other out', "Black Lives Matter' and 'unity', but some of the art is more abstract. All of it tells a story about how these students want to help the world. 

"I am so proud it's so special to me," said Lianelys, a student at St. Augustine Preparatory Academy. "I feel seen. I feel like people look at that and I don't feel like I have to hide anymore."

"It's actually pretty amazing because not everybody gets a chance to be in a mural or be in anything at all," said Angel Garcia, another classmate. 

The mural was a chance to students to connect with other classes and other schools. 

When everything from hobbies to math went virtual over the last year field trips were no exception. 

"Obviously with the school year looking a little bit different last year we weren't able to do any outside field trips so we found this virtual option with sharp literacy," said Adam Scanlan, the principal at Swallow Elementary School. 

Students learned techniques and discussed the meaning of art through a screen, and then put the ideas to wood. Each spilling their purpose on a hand. Vedale Hill is the artist who taught the students through Zoom. 

"They're thinking about grandiose ideas while doing such a small project when given the scale of the world," said Hill. "That amazes me every time. There are some of them that are so in tune with the world and some that are so in tune with themselves. They're thinking about a very personal way they can help their parents or other students in the class." 

Swallow Elementary School donated the $8,500 it cost to get the mural done.  It will be there for at least a year, for people to come see. 

Share this article: