Rosemont Mayor Brad Stephens joined teenage artists from the village Saturday to celebrate their efforts to liven the community and honor their heritage.
The young artists, along with Chicago muralist/instructor Rahmaan Statik, spent the past several weeks creating three 100-foot by 15-foot murals near the Rosemont Recreation Center on Barry Street.
On Saturday, Stephens helped them unveil their finished works, which the village commissioned as part of a larger initiative called "It's Art Here." The mural project aimed to create an inspiring visual reality on otherwise ordinary public spaces, as well as offer employment opportunities to area high school students, according to the village.
The murals depict images of Mexican history and culture, such as Our Lady of Guadalupe, Cesar Chavez, Frida Kahlo, Selena, famous mariachi performers and Day of the Dead imagery.
Rosemont hired Statik to work with eight teenage apprentices -- either current high school students or recent graduates -- to come up with the designs, stencil them on the walls and fill them in with paint.
The murals are just one of several projects that Rosemont is working on for the Barry Recreation Center and surrounding neighborhood, according to the village.
The village is converting a grass recreation field adjacent to the center into a multiuse turf area with the help of an Open Space Lands Acquisition and Development grant from the state, and creating new parking areas for easier access to the center.
Infrastructure improvements, including the repaving of driveways and alleys, and creating more effective snow and garbage removal, are also in the works in the nearby neighborhood.