Tubman Mural Dedication; Day of Resilience

Submitted to Dorchester Banner/Jill Jasuta
Harriet Tubman Mural “Take My Hand”, by artist Michael Rosato.

Dorchester Center for the Arts is pleased to announce the dedication of the Harriet Tubman mural “Take My Hand,” to be held on Sept. 7 at 1 p.m., with the Maryland State Arts Council, artist Michael Rosato, and special guests. The mural is located behind 424 Race St. in Cambridge on an exterior wall of the Harriet Tubman Museum and Educational Center.

The ceremony will be a featured part of the inaugural “Day of Resilience – Return, Reconcile, Reunite and Rejoice” commemorating the 400th Anniversary of the Transatlantic Slave Trade in America being organized by Alpha Genesis CDC with support from the City of Cambridge.

The day-long event will also feature the Constituency for Africa (CFA)’s Harriet Tubman Town Hall meeting on Africa with guest speaker Dr. Julius Garvey (son of the late Dr. Marcus Garvey) and Dr. Djibril Diallo, president of the African Renaissance and Diaspora Network (ARDN), as moderator. The contributing panel for the discussion will feature ambassadors from the countries of Mali, Zambia, Namibia and Togo.

About the Mural
In 2018, The Dorchester Center for the Arts had the opportunity to apply for a public art grant from the Maryland State Arts Council (MSAC) to produce a piece of public art as part of the Arts Across Maryland Initiative, commemorating MSAC’s 50th Anniversary. DCA decided on a mural as a placemaking project and approached Alpha Genesis CDC as a project partner.

Once the Harriet Tubman Museum and Education Center was identified as the location for the mural, the grassroots collaborative journey began. A public forum was held at the museum to gather feedback and ideas with commissioned artist Michael Rosato present to sketch and react to ideas as they emerged.

Armed with this communal feedback, Mr. Rosato returned to his studio to begin the creative process. A few months later he presented his inspired idea at another public forum held at DCA and the design was embraced wholeheartedly. Once the project was underway, additional funding was received from Cambridge Main Street.

Mr. Rosato completed the mural in May 2019 to instant acclaim. Images went viral, and soon both local and national media sources were covering the news. Thousands of visitors from all over the world have flocked to the mural in the few months since completion, and millions more have been touched simply from viewing the image through the media. It has become an icon, a beacon, a treasure.

We are humbled by the success of this project, yet proud of the impact on the local community, the county, the state and beyond. It is part of our collective story, and we now know it is the impetus for needed conversations and new stories yet to come.

For more information on activities at Dorchester Center for the Arts stop by 321 High St., call 410-228-7782 or visit online at www.dorchesterarts.org. Find us on Facebook!

DCA is dedicated to enriching Maryland’s Eastern Shore community through high quality, engaging programming in the visual, literary, musical, and performing arts. As the designated County Arts Council, the Dorchester Center for the Arts is committed to increasing access to the arts for all members of our community by supporting extensive outreach and educational opportunities in the arts. Programs at DCA are supported by the Maryland State Arts Council.

Editor’s note: Spectrum is the weekly column of the Dorchester Arts Center. It is written by Barbara J. Seese, executive director.

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