There’s no better way to immediately add beauty to a city’s landscape than with a mural. In Buffalo, we’ve been celebrating the creation of significant murals for years (although we’ve also been playing catchup to cities, such as Philadelphia). Now, the city of Niagara Falls is “full speed ahead” on the mural front, thanks to the NF Murals project that was initiated by the Niagara Falls Heritage Arts in 2019 (starting with 8 artists).
Now, in order to spread the love of art (and awareness of the murals), the NF Murals project has unveiled a logo and launched a website – nfmurals.org. The website not only showcases the works, it also provides information of the muralists and their inspiration behind their works.
Currently, there are 3 additional murals underway, featuring the talents of LaShonda Davis (depicting Uhuru Love), Princessa Williams (depicting the late Congressman John Lewis), and Jalen Law (lead image – depiction of Calvin “Pop” Porter, a Niagara Falls boxer).
“Uhuru’s work stood for freedom, and that’s why it meant so much for me to be a part of this project,” said Davis, a Niagara Falls native who is widely known for her artwork exhibits in the 1960’s.
“Many people do not know that Mr. Lewis has family members in Niagara Falls,” Williams said. “I am honored to share my art with others and invoke conversations on Lewis’ critical role in the civil rights movement. It will be exciting to honor him together with his family.”
“My design is built with the intention of shedding light on Porter’s life through intentionally using vibrant colors,” Law said of the boxer who made it to the American Olympics and went professional in 1982. “When viewers see this mural, I want the colors to pull them into the portrait, to educate them on who ‘Pop’ was and what he means for the City of Niagara Falls.”
All of these murals are significant to Niagara Falls in one way or another. They demonstrate historic and cultural pride, and call for “social justice awareness” for these figureheads, and the striking landscape that helped to mold them. Ultimately, by instilling pride in a community, other economic fruits will be yielded, similar to what we have seen in Buffalo’s neighborhoods that have rallied behind the artistic efforts.
NF Murals will announce more artists each week through the Fall season. Follow the artists’ work on Instagram, Facebook (@nfmurals) and nfmurals.org.
Depot & Main in Niagara Falls, NY