Written by Tamara Murga, Editor-in-Chief
The historical MacArthur Park in Los Angeles has experienced a colorful revitalization through the power of community and hope. Known for its high rate of illegal activities, the park has grown lonelier over the years, but with a splash of color by Portraits of Hope the community has helped invite positive vibes back to the public area.
According to the Portraits of Hope website, “[m]ore than 10,000 children and adults throughout Los Angeles,” participated in this transformation. Most of the spheres that cover the lake were painted by children from several schools and hospitals. Many community groups, foundations, and businesses, including: the Offices of Mayor Garcetti, Los Angeles Department of Recreation and Parks, Home Depot, Niagara Cares, Plaza El Segundo, and more, helped integrate the projects vision of uniting public art, community engagement, creative therapy, and civic education.
Each sphere has a story behind it, a purpose of color choice, and a passion that speaks for itself. Many children in several hospitals around Los Angeles were visited by the giant spheres, paint, and brushes. Whether on a wheelchair, therapy room, or in bed-rest, they had the opportunity to express their creativity and splash their colors onto the community of Los Angeles. If you search several hashtags like #spheresatmacarthurpark, #portraitsofhope, #iloveLA, and #macarthurpark, you will find inimitable stories and photographs shared by Angelenos. Not only on social medias, neighbors, and local businesses can testify how this exhibit accomplished the shared vision of a community by bringing hope back home.
Still interested in visiting? With the help of the LA Cultural Affairs Department, the spheres will continue to float around. Though September marked their end at the lake and their beginning as facility beautifications, an extension was provided for thousands more to enjoy. The colorful spheres will continue to call the lake home up until the “CicLAvia-Heart of LA” happening on Sunday, October 18.
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