Gaia completes his mural on North and Charles – photo by Martha Cooper
It has been hard to miss the recent stream of excitement surrounding Open Walls Baltimore – a mural project in Station North headed by local street artist Gaia in collaboration with Station North Arts & Entertainment, Inc.
A large crowd listens to the speeches at the kick-off of Open Walls Baltimore
The project had its official launch last night at the Wind Up Space, with nearly 200 people in attendance, including representatives from the Baltimore Office of Promotion and the Arts, Station North, PNC Bank, the Baltimore Museum of Art, Visit Baltimore, and the Greenmount West and North Charles Community Associations.
Speeches were delivered to a very crowded room by Gaia, Ben Stone from Station North, Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, and Will Backstrom from PNC Bank, who all received big applause as they declared Station North as a cultural and artistic hotspot!
Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake delivers a speech at the launch of Open Walls Baltimore
Gaia delivers a speech at the launch of Open Walls Baltimore
Open Walls represents the largest initiative activated from the National Endowment for The Arts Our Town Grant and matching funds raise by Station North with additional support provided by PNC Bank, among others.
Maya Hayuk’s mural across from the Charles Theater- photo by Priya Bhayana
Two murals have been completed so far, one by Gaia on North Avenue and Charles, and the other by Maya Hayuk across from Charles Theater on Charles Street. These two murals were a test run, preparing for more than 20 local, national and international artists to tackle their own large-scale painting projects.
Gaia and Maya Hayuk
Block parties, concerts, lectures, and tours are being planned throughout April and May in association with Open Walls Baltimore. There is also a very special Final Friday Event on May 25th in conjunction with Station North’s already successful Final Friday events.
From our What Weekly office at Load of Fun, we can just barely see Gaia’s Mural from our window. As a business run out of Station North, we look forward to watching our neighborhood transform! What Weekly will be providing continuing coverage of the Open Walls Baltimore Project as the murals appear throughout April and May.
In the meantime, for more stories on Open Walls, check out these great articles in other local Baltimore Publications
Read the Urbanite story on Open Walls Baltimore
Check out these other great photos from the kick-off of Open Walls Baltimore:
Gaia and Doreen Bolger
Scott Burkholder and friends
Meredith and Brad
Jeremy Gunderson and Sadie
Karen Barley and Will Backstrom from PNC Bank
Kevin Brown (Station North Arts Cafe) smooches on lovely lady