Pillars of Society
Date created: 2015
The inspiration for Pillars Of Society comes from the columns holding up I-65. The artist considered the important role that the columns serve in helping people get to where they want to go. After he held meetings with the adjacent neighborhood associations, the importance of people who hold up their community began to take artistic form.
According to the artist, “there are elements in Greek and Roman architecture called the Caryatid (female) and the Atlas (male) where human bodies serve as columns holding up a structure. I thought about the people we met at the meetings and the words they used to talk about important community values: fortitude, patience, modern day living, culture, respecting the past, and embracing the future. What makes these things happen in real life? People do. People metaphorically hold up their communities and work together to create a place they want to live their lives.”
Although the people in the mural are fictional, the artist hopes they will remind viewers of people they know and will serve to provide that sense of a united community as they travel from one end of the underpass to the other. “You will be in the company of the idea of your community, all the people connecting the neighborhood together and holding it up.” After the mural was completed, the artist held a “signing” event where people from the neighborhood could request that their name be assigned to one of the anonymous faces; this action by the artist personalizes the mural to the neighborhood even more closely.
Funding for Vibrant Corridors, a city-wide effort to create murals in key underpasses and gateways around downtown Indianapolis, is provided in part by the Lilly Foundation and the Glick Fund, a fund of Central Indiana Community Foundation, Keep Indianapolis Beautiful, the Arts Council of Indianapolis, and Downtown Indy.