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"Morse School Mural"

Arai, Tomie

Central Square/Cambridgeport, Mural

40 Granite Street

Cambridge, MA 02139

Location Description: Morse School, Lobby

Date: 1999

Materials: Acrylic on birch

Dimensions: 8' x 16'

When Arai was asked to create a mural as part of the school renovation, she chose to show the school's rich culture through historical and natural elements culled from the neighborhood. Near the horizon, she introduced the old Morse School and other buildings of historic Cambridgeport. The cultural diversity of the students is suggested through the biodiversity of the nearby Charles River and a band of traditional designs from different countries. A large central image of the Tree-of-Knowledge represents the school's innovative Core Knowledge curriculum.

A third-generation Japanese American, Arai focuses her work on three central themes: the immigrant experience, cultural identity, and the role of memory A lifelong resident of New York, she has worked collaboratively with community groups for over twenty years and serves on the boards of the Museum of the Chinese in the Americas and the Coast to Coast Women Artists of Color Organization.

City of Cambridge, Public Art Collection