For 28 years, the Philadelphia Mural Arts Program has united artists and communities through a collaborative process that stems from the traditions of mural making and public intervention. Its approach embodies the twin goals of inspiring communal ownership over public space, and creating unique project-based learning opportunities for marginalized youth and adults. The latest artist to join the program is the Berlin-based Katharina Grosse, who has installed three out of seven installations that are planned along Philadelphia’s Northeast Corridor Railway. 

Grosse says of her work, which involves the use of her signature spray paint technique to spread colour along the installations: “The work shifts your notion of size through movement, so when you stand in front of it, it’s huge, but when you pass it by on the train it becomes small. This kind of experience — that your life is constantly in that kind of changing mode — is something I’ve always been fascinated by. And this time we have an extra tool, which is the train. In a museum you walk, and that’s the way you move. Here, you can fly.” 

A talk between Grosse and Carlos Basualdo, Curator of Contemporary Art at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, is scheduled for 18 May at the Museum.

Images courtesy of the artist and Philadelphia Mural Arts Program.