Standing Together in Jersey City

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This summer, 50 artists activated 30 Jersey City walls for the first-ever Mural Festival with Mana. Moth, meet flame.

Intended to breathe fresh life into local communities and businesses, this expansive event was organized by the Office of Cultural Affairs, the Jersey City Mural Arts Program (JCMAP) and, of course, Mana Public Arts. A collective celebration of public art and creativity is the perfect response to a year in lockdown, and we were thrilled to get involved.

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Anchoring the mural mania is a massive piece titled Stand With Us by artist Amanda Phingbodhipakkiya, placed near the Holland Tunnel entrance on Monmouth Street. A recent NYC Artist in residence, her body of work focuses on the promotion of social justice and representation. “Art has the ability to soothe grief, amplify joy, and rally people to action,” Phingbodhipakkiya remarked. “Stand With Us is meant to be a love letter to the Asian American and Pacific Islander community in Jersey City. You are seen, you are heard, and you have allies beside you.”

Art has the ability to soothe grief, amplify joy, and rally people to action.

– Amanda Phingbodhipakkiya

We were proud to donate the painting hours and resources to bring her vision to an excess of four thousand square feet. While championing human rights, this mural is also an environmental feat. The paint used, Airlite, captures pollutants and eliminates toxins in a non-chemical process. Situated along a major thoroughfare, the mural will actively capture car emissions.

It is a piece that reminds us of the vast impact art can have on our communities and our world. We could not agree more with Mana Chief of Staff Theadore Ward when he said, “We believe in the power of art to unify and uplift communities.” It was an honor to contribute to this most recent effort, and we look forward to our next opportunity to support their endeavors.

For more information, see the Jersey City press release.

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