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Students at MICA and the University of Baltimore Collaborate on Baltimore Song Mural

Baltimore Sun and Bmore Media Featured the Mural, Which Is the Result of a Joint Class Project and 'Celebrates Everyday Life in Baltimore'

Posted 02.18.10 by mica media relations

Baltimore Son Mural by MICA and UB students

BALTIMORE--A flowing four-panel mural based on the song Baltimore will be displayed during the month of March inside the main entrance of Baltimore's Penn Station (1515 N. Charles St.). Created as part of a unique collaboration between the MICA and the University of Baltimore (UB), the unique work of art brings to life the lyrics and themes of the song Baltimore, written by local musicians Caleb Stine and Saleem Heggins.

READ: The Baltimore Sun recalls the story of how MICA students came to partner with the University of Baltimore in exploring Baltimore.

READ: Bmore Media featured the mural and its significance to Baltimore with an article and several photos of the collaborative process.


The mural will be installed on Monday, March 1, with the official opening and reception on Thursday, March 4 at 2 p.m. The mural will remain on display at the station through Wednesday, March 31 and is expected to be seen by thousands of Amtrak and MARC train passengers during this time.

Artistic adviser Christina Ralls, adjunct professor and former community artist at UB, worked closely with the MICA student artists in a class called Finding Baltimore taught by MICA faculty member Paula Philips. "It was a joy to watch the mural evolve from concept to finished artwork," Ralls said. "The students really made this project their own, and their extraordinary talent and passion show in their creative depictions of Baltimore life."

Project coordinator Paul Sturm, adjunct professor in UB's Department of Community Studies and Civic Engagement, conceived of the mural after hearing Baltimore on the radio and seeing Stine and Heggins perform it live. "The song celebrates everyday life in Baltimore. Its message of hope and faith in our city needs to be conveyed as broadly as possible," Sturm said. "Displaying the mural in Penn Station will be a great way to welcome visitors and say ‘welcome home' to returning Baltimore residents."

The mural is part of the Baltimore Song Project, funded with a grant from UB as part of its commitment to the revitalization of Central Baltimore. Other components of the project include presentations by UB students about the song's themes and an original dance piece involving students from the Johns Hopkins University's Peabody Institute that express the song's story through movement. 

For more information, call 410-225-2300 or e-mail news@mica.edu.

Photo caption: The finished Baltimore Song Mural ready to be installed in Penn Station.

Founded in 1826, Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) is the oldest continuously degree-granting college of art and design in the nation. The College enrolls nearly 3,500 undergraduate, graduate and continuing studies students from 49 states and 52 countries in fine arts, design, electronic media, art education, liberal arts, and professional studies degree and non-credit programs. With art and design programs ranked in the top ten by U.S. News and World Report, MICA is pioneering interdisciplinary approaches to innovation, research, and community and social engagement. Alumni and programming reach around the globe, even as MICA remains a cultural cornerstone in the Baltimore/Washington region, hosting hundreds of exhibitions and events annually by students, faculty and other established artists.