Created By: Mural Tours
One artist local to St. Louis, Chris Green, has been commissioned by the nonprofit Better Family Life to paint murals of prominent St. Louisans on the boarded-up windows and doors of abandoned buildings along Page Boulevard. This walking tour exhibition highlights some of these works on one block of Page and emphasizes the importance of this project by providing important background on the subjects of the portraits. In Green's own words, the murals are meant to "deliver hope to individuals and families whose lives have been marginalized" (Lisenby), particularly by the racially prejudiced policies of urban renewal, triage, and the foreclosure crisis in North St. Louis. With figures ranging from the famous Maya Angelou to lesser-known local heroes like Halbert Sullivan, Green repaints the image of North St. Louis with his mural projects to provide a picture of redemption.
While Chris Green has been painting large portraits of local Black heroes and positioning them publicly in Black neighborhoods for years, “artist” is not his profession. He works in a storeroom for the city’s Division of Recreation. Additionally, Green is a part of the community in which he paints for Better Family Life’s project; he himself lives on Page, directly across the street from one of the abandoned houses with his paintings (King). Green paints with genuinity and with an intimate understanding of the situation at hand, pouring his heart and humble skill into providing his community with pride and positive representation.