Harriet Tubman Mural

March 9 to May 4, 2017

Please join us at the Schweinfurth Art Center from 6 to 8 pm Thursday, May 4, to celebrate the installation of a 32-foot crocheted mural of Harriet Tubman on the front of the Art Center. More 150 community volunteers created this mural by crocheting 2-foot x 2-foot squares under the direction of visiting artist, Olek. 

The mural is part of the Love Across the USA crochet project by Olek, an internationally recognized crochet artist whose work often amplifies the voices of women. Olek’s goal is to create a large-scale mural in every state that celebrates a strong female figure from each location. For the state of New York, she chose two women: Harriet Tubman in Auburn and Susan B. Anthony in Rochester. Auburn, where Tubman lived following the end of the Civil War, will be one of the first cities in the country to complete the project.

The Schweinfurth Art Center hosted three workshops in March where Olek taught participants how to crochet and distributed instructions. The mural was divided into 2-foot x 2-foot square patterns that volunteers took home to complete. People of all ages, skill levels, and backgrounds participated. Olek will return to Auburn to connect the squares a few days before the installation.

Installation of the mural will begin in the morning on May 4. Olek will unroll the mural from the roof of the Art Center and a filmmaker will be onsite documenting the event in the afternoon. The mural will hang in front of the Art Center through the summer.

Community members and volunteers crocheters are invited to attend the celebration. Music, entertainment, and light refreshments will be provided. Olek will be on hand to talk about the project. This project was made possible by Olek and her team, sponsorships from the Senator John A. DeFrancisco Arts in Cayuga County Program and the Hilton Garden Inn; funding from the New York State Council on the Arts; and assistance from Jesse Kline, Jamie Rathbone, the Schweinfurth Art Center Board of Trustees, and the 150 volunteers who worked tirelessly to create the squares for the mural.