Current MX parents/guardians: Click here to submit the story of how your family came to Berkeley! Submissions due Jan. 12th.
From 2004-2007 a group of Malcolm X parents, students, and community members created HereStories, a series of murals on both sides of the Malcolm X Elementary playground fence along Ashby Avenue and King Street. Ten murals on the outside of the fence told stories of the history of our community through the narratives of ten community elders, and students added ten murals on the inside of the fence facing the playground. To read the full story of the project, click here.
Unfortunately, over the last decade these murals have decayed substantially due to fading, peeling, and vandalism. In 2017-18 the Malcolm X PTA is repairing and updating this project, in partnership with the original volunteer group, a new generation of parents and students, and support from local donors. Professional artists are repairing some of the original outside murals that can be saved, and are creating new murals for the ones that are beyond repair, including stories like the story of longtime MX principal Cheryl Chinn. In the spring, students will create a new mural series on the inside of the fence telling current MX families' immigration stories, inspired by the Great Migration paintings by Jacob Lawrence.
We will complete the project with a big public celebration on Saturday June 2nd, where MX families (including elders whose immigration stories are depicted), the artists, South Berkeley neighbors, and Malcolm X alumnae from decades past come together to celebrate the new artwork and build community.
Current MX families can click here to submit the story of their family's migration to Berkeley here consideration for the project. The deadline for submissions is Friday, January 12th. A group of parent volunteers will then select the final 10 stories for the murals, with a focus on representing the broadest possible range of backgrounds, stories, and family types. All stories, even if they are not chosen for the murals, will have the opportunity to be part of a companion video we are creating. More info will be available in early January about registration for the after-school class to create the murals, taught by MX parent/substitute art teacher Louise Paige. The class is slated for Tuesday afternoons from 2:30-3:30, from Jan. 23 - April 17. While the class will be limited to 4th & 5th graders for practical reasons, we are looking for stories of families in all grades - the students doing the painting will in most cases not be the same as the students whose families are depicted.
Questions? Email MX parent volunteer coordinator Zach Franklin at firstname.lastname@example.org. Together we can!