Instagrammable Murals to Come to Clinton

Social Justice Club Murals


Leah Scoppa

The club for a Countries of Origin campaign last year

The Arts Council obtained a grant to hire an artist to paint two murals for the town of Clinton. They will be social justice murals that will be interactive. People will take pictures with the murals. These murals will be called “Instagramable Clinton”

The artist hired to paint the mural is Jaii Marc Renee. The Morgan Social Justice Club has been working alongside the Clinton Arts Council, the Clinton Human Rights Commission, and the artist to complete these murals.

The first meeting was with Head of the Clinton Arts Council Steve Van Ness, Chair of the Clinton Human Rights Committee Tom Shultz, Principal Keri Hagness, and the Social Justice Club on Thursday, March 23rd.

There we came up with ideas that we wanted displayed on the murals.

There were other meetings where we discussed redesigning the murals. At the last meeting, students met with the artist Jaii to review and discuss his sketches of the mural. There will be two five by ten murals. Both will reflect our Morgan community. One will be based on equality and the other will be based on ethnicity and where everyone at Morgan is from.

Steve Van Ness said, “part of the Clinton Arts Council’s mission is to support create and produce arts and education projections in Clinton. This project does exactly this while also addressing important human rights and social justice issues in and for the town.” He also expressed their importance and said, “Giving Voice to Morgan students around the issues of social justice and human rights in our town is important, while creating lasting public art for the town is an important cultural and artistic endeavor for the Arts Council to foster.”

Tom Shultz said, “The project was suggested to me by Steve Van Ness, chair of the Clinton Arts Council, who had been involved with the RiseUp organization in developing other murals in CT.” He also said, “I thought it would be a great way for the Social Justice Club to express the perspective of Morgan students on topics on social justice and human rights through imagery to be shared with the town.” He stated, “The idea too is not only for the students to photograph themselves with murals to share on Instagram, but that these murals are movable and can be on display at the HCH library and Town Hall and to use at summer events.”

Students hanging up the mapMembers of the Social Justice Club believe the murals are important. Junior Muntara Singh said, “The murals are an excellent way for new students and members of the community to understand what Morgan, and by extension, Clinton, is all about. We want students to feel welcomed, and to know that Morgan is a family where everyone belongs.” She also said, “As a young woman of color in a PWI, it’s important to me that others like me feel like they have a place here at Morgan and that their presence is intrinsic in the very fabric of our being. Diversity is good, but inclusion is great.”

Freshman Josephine Simons said, “It’s important that we are doing this project because it represents the diversity and inclusivity and Morgan in general.” She also said, “It makes Clinton seem more like a whole.” She claimed, “What we are putting on the mural is incorporating everyone, making them feel recognized and included.”

Sophomore Daniel Highkin said, “I think it is important for students to learn.” He also said, “These murals express what we should know.” He really expressed how these murals will show equality.
The murals should be finished in the near future and will be displayed around Clinton for everyone to see and take pictures with.