The Mural Arts Program and SEPTA took the concept of bringing art to the people to a new level today when they unveiled "We Are All Neurons," a student-designed mural wrapped around Market Frankford Line car 1156.
The "mobile mural" will travel on the Market Frankford Line (MFL) for approximately three months, adding a flash of color to the journeys of the line's 200,000 daily passengers.
Artist Benjamin Volta and students in a Mural Arts summer program designed the mural with inspiration from the "BRAIN" Initiative - a research effort to understand and map the brain that President Obama announced last spring. Together the students explored the unknowns of the brain and drew countless neurons. They even painted a giant neuron on the floor of Volta's studio.
"I'm so proud," said eighth-grader Ailisha Goodwin-Dancy who helped design the mural. "I see some of mine in here," she said.
While SEPTA has wrapped train cars for advertisements before, this is the first time SEPTA has done so for solely artistic purposes.
Mural Arts Executive Director Jane Golden praised SEPTA for never saying no to art. Golden said that one of the Mural Arts Program's most successful projects is "Love Letter," the series of murals that can be seen from the MFL as it travels west of Center City. She said she is especially excited by this new train wrap because, unlike Love Letter, the project will reach passengers on the entire MFL.
"Art should be integrated into our lives," Golden said. "We believe every citizen in Philly should have access to art."
From 2012-2014 Christine covered transportation, writing about everything from pedestrian concerns to bicycle infrastructure, bridges, trail networks, public transit and more. Her favorite assignments sent her bushwhacking through Philadelphia’s yet-to-be-cleared bike trails, catching a glimpse of SEPTA’s inner workings or pounding the pavement to find out what pedestrians really think. Christine also covered community news for Eyes on the Street, where her work ranged from food sovereignty to public art and urban greening. She first joined PlanPhilly in fall 2011 as an intern through a partnership with Temple University’s Philadelphia Neighborhoods website.