Restoring Community Public Art

Alewives and Mercury Fish

Albert Zeno
55th Street and Lake Park, 1972
This classic underpass mural was painted as an indictment of the industrial pollution of the Great Lakes, especially the consequence of the invasion of alewives into the freshwater lakes, an event here witnesses by a procession of local residents. Humans’ subjugation of nature is thematically linked to scenes of shackled and liberated black people. The mural closes as mothers of all races nestle their infants and fish swim freely. Excerpted from “Urban Art” by Olivia Gude and Jeff Huebner.