Lakewood fifth graders tour murals in downtown Ann Arbor

The Ann Arbor Art Center hopes to offer more field trips and mural tours in the future

Lakewood Elementary fifth graders were treated to a tour of murals in downtown Ann Arbor Wednesday courtesy of the Ann Arbor Art Center.

The tour came about after Lakewood art teacher Peggy Leonard contacted the A2AC to see if they would be interested in taking her students on a guided mural tour.

“Now that the A2AC has expanded, we have been interested in exploring the possibility of offering field trip opportunities and mural tours,” said A2AC Education Director Jean Spindler. “While we don’t have such a program in place at this time, we were very excited to provide a mural tour experience for her students to get a sense of how we might structure one as we go forward. We are so grateful that (Leonard) reached out to us!”

Spindler said the goal through leading this mural tour field trip was to help students:

  • Gain an understanding of and appreciation for the importance of public art.
  • Learn more about the complex process that goes into planning and creating these large-scale public artworks.
  • Discover how public art has the potential to transform community spaces.
  • Explore and individually experience the murals in a way that is meaningful, inspirational, or engaging to them.

Leonard said the day was a big success. 

“As an art teacher, it was rewarding to spend time out of the classroom where we could examine, share and reflect on what it means to be an artist,” she said.

Spindler further noted that:

  • Art in Public is a community-funded initiative that was launched during the pandemic, as a means of infusing art into the community.  The A2AC Murals program is part of this initiative.
  • A2AC Murals is the culmination of pairing downtown building and business owners with local, regional, and national artists who transformed the building walls into spectacular murals—providing the community and visitors the opportunity to experience and enjoy these large, vibrant works of public art in Ann Arbor and the SE Michigan area. 
  • The first murals were painted during the pandemic, providing safe outdoor art experiences for individuals and families. It is hoped that everyone who visits the downtown area will take a moment to walk around and view these impressive artworks.
  • More information about the murals and a mural walk map can be found here:

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