Hey Sistah, Soul Sistah…
Painted by Muralist, Kristy Sandoval
This mural is on the side of Stylesville Barbershop in Pacoima, CA at the corner of Van Nuys Boulevard and Pala Avenue. The photo is beautiful, but in person, it is breathtaking. Most importantly though, it is thought-provoking, soul stirring…but isn’t that the point of art? It’s about more than just hanging something up on the wall that matches a room’s décor.
It should move us and cause us to ponder. It should bring pleasure every time we gaze upon it. It should give rise to some kind of emotion: happiness, joy, anger, sadness, something to remind us that we are, and we can, and we will…It should be accessible. Public art, street art, graffiti (whatever you want to call it), does that for everyone. Rich or poor, we can all enjoy it.
In this particular piece you see the pretty flowers, but look closer. At first you may think “Wow, I love the relief-work with the flowers. They give the mural so much dimension and the colors are so brilliant.” But then, you notice the writing: “A Womyn’s Place is in the Struggle.” Womyn? Is that a typo? And then you remember that Women’s Movement thing, or that ERA thing from back in the day. Look a little closer and you see a shout-out to Assata Shakur. Who? Well, those are all the things that ran through my mind.
And then things went a little deeper for me…Malala…sex slaves right hear in our own front yard!…male politicians debating the choices a woman should not be able to make about her own body. The struggle is more real than ever, ladies…and gentlemen–who “truly” love the women in their lives–and our place is in that struggle.