Mural Arts Philadelphia, in partnership with Philabundance, is thrilled to announce the commission and installation of a new mural at Philabundance’s Hunger Relief Center. This captivating and colorful mural, designed by renowned artist Calo Rosa, is bringing new life to South Philadelphia while celebrating the vital impact of Philabundance’s work in the community.
A special mural dedication and ribbon-cutting ceremony was held Wednesday, September 6, 2023, and featured guests from Mural Arts, Philabundance employees and volunteers, the Philabundance Board, and elected officials. The event also highlighted the nationally recognized Feeding America’s Hunger Action Month campaign, observed throughout September.
Calo Rosa’s mural design, entitled More Than Food, is a vibrant homage to movement. Featuring food flowing through the Philabundance warehouses, volunteers actively engaged, and the journeys of the people served, the mural reflects the ceaseless dynamism of Philabundance. At its heart, the mural depicts the community coming together to savor a meal, encapsulating the unifying power of food.
“I was lucky enough to grow up in a family full of art and good food,” Calo reflected fondly. “In this mural, I got the chance to honor my mom looking at the past as a part of history, and my son looking forward to the future. The fact that Philabundance helps create this love in homes and the joy of opening a box and creating something with love is what inspired this mural. We had a great team. I’m happy with the result, but so happy that people like it as well. It’s a celebration to honor of all the people who help Philabundance. That’s what I wanted to translate in this mural, and I hope that everybody who walks by feels the same way – the energy, the happiness, that brings your work for us and to the community. It’s amazing.”
Jane Golden, Executive Director of Mural Arts Philadelphia, noted that “Art, in its most profound sense, has always been a powerful tool for social change. It bridges gaps, fosters understanding, and stimulates conversation. Murals like the one Calo Rosa designed are visual narratives that can illuminate pressing issues. Through this mural and our partnership with Philabundance, we can highlight food insecurity, humanize the statistics, and create a palpable sense of empathy in viewers, causing more to be engaged in tackling the serious issue of hunger in the Greater Philadelphia region.”
The mural was selected through a rigorous process involving an RFQ (Request for Qualifications) and an immersion experience for finalists. The winning design was chosen via a popular vote by Philabundance staff, PCK students, Board members, and Community Partners.
“We are thrilled to dedicate this beautiful mural that represents the spirit of unity, compassion, and hope that defines our mission at Philabundance. This mural is both a work of art and a symbol of our commitment to fighting hunger and nourishing the communities we serve,” said Loree Jones Brown, CEO of Philabundance. “We extend our deepest gratitude to the talented artist Calo Rosa, volunteers, and supporters whose contributions have made this mural possible. With every brushstroke, we are painting a brighter future, where no one goes to bed hungry. This mural stands as a testament to the power of collaboration and the belief that everyone deserves access to nutritious food. We hope it inspires others to join us in our mission to create hunger-free communities today while working to end hunger for good.”
Philabundance and Mural Arts hosted paint days throughout the summer to bring this project to life. Philabundance staff members, volunteers, and sponsors joined the Mural Arts team to contribute to the mural by painting cloth sections that are being installed on the wall of the Galloway Warehouse.
Mural Arts and Philabundance extend their gratitude to Capital One Café and the City of Philadelphia for their generous sponsorship of this project.