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"See Her," Lifts Up Stories Of Incarcerated Women

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Thursday Jun 29, 2017

"See Her," Lifts Up Stories Of Incarcerated Women

See Her, a mixed-media mural conceived by artist activist Ann Lewis is now part of the urban landscape at 808 Tremont St. in the South End, a property owned and managed by The Community Builders adjacent to the historic People's Baptist Church of Boston. The artist created the work in collaboration with women at the McGrath House, a reentry facility where incarcerated women serve the final six months of their prison sentences. McGrath House is a program of Community Resources for Justice (CRJ).

The mural was commissioned by Boston non-profit Now + There, known for its temporary, site-specific public artworks. See Her is the first artwork in Now + There's Year of the Woman programming and will remain through October, 2018.

"This piece aims to champion feminist expressions in the realm of public art by supporting a female artist, lifting up community voices, and exploring the power of female resilience and creativity," stated Now + There Executive Director Kate Gilbert. "We are proud to support Lewis' vision which emphasizes the power of the choices we make every day."

Lewis is known for delving courageously and unabashedly into the heart of pressing social issues. Trained in both graphic and fine art, the artist will use photographic imagery and paint in creating the 42'x38' mural which will reflect on the inherent worth, strength and potential of women. "With my work See Her, I am asking viewers to look past their presumptions and see the human, the woman looking back at them," Lewis said. "We cannot face the challenge of mass incarceration without first recognizing the value of those entrenched in our criminal justice system."

Lisa Chute, Assistant Program Director at McGrath House, said that Lewis' work with residents of the reentry center was a "perfect partnership." "The women will see this mural on display in their community and know that they helped to create it. It's a huge validation and a testament to their creativity and perseverance."

"As part of the South End for more than 50 years, The Community Builders is thrilled to host this powerful mural at our South End Apartments development. The public art will be a vibrant addition to the neighborhood for residents and neighbors to enjoy," said Stephanie Anderson Garrett, vice president of communications and fund development.

The public is encouraged to join in the conversation with the artist and Now + There through social media. Limited edition signed prints of the mural will be available for purchase with a portion of the proceeds supporting CRJ. To learn more visit http://www.nowandthere.org/.

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