In Penguin Hall’s Street Art class, students explore the history of public art and contemporary street art while visually analyzing public artwork and the connections between culture, art and community art projects. Students become familiar with street art movements, styles, and vocabulary and have the opportunity to participate in a large scale group mural project at the end of the semester.

On Thursday, September 9, students had the opportunity to hear from local artist Miguel Cruz aka Oka.Je. Miguel is one of the six artists who completed the incredible Black Lives Matter mural in Lynn this summer. His artwork can be seen throughout Salem and on murals across the country.

As he answered each raised hand, Miguel shared his experience with painting the Lynn mural–how choosing the right location for a mural can make all the difference, especially when expressing an important message. He described how the Lynn community even came together, providing food, art supplies and support of the project that spanned two days.

Miguel also imparted his own artistic advice to our students. “You are in control as the artist. Don’t fear mistakes. If you want something, practice!”