Opelousas Awarded Arts Grant for Celebration Mural


Opelousas, LA – As the City of Opelousas prepares to celebrate its tricentennial in 2020, the community will be able to take part in the creation of a new mural designed to celebrate the city’s 300-year anniversary. Once complete, the collaborative mural, which is part of the Celebrate Opelousas 300 activities, will be digitally printed and used for the official 300-anniversary poster.

A grant in the amount of $2695 recently awarded to Opelousas Tourism by the Acadiana Center for the Arts through the Louisiana Division of the Arts is helping to fund the project. Along with promoting and exposing people to the arts, the project is intended to strengthen civic pride and participation and serve as a preservation tool in sharing information about the city’s history.
The lead artist for the project is Jerome Ford who is an accomplished artist and an instructor for St. Landry Parish School Board Talented & Visual Arts Program. Using notes and ideas from the Celebrate Opelousas 300 Commission and various community stakeholders, Ford has developed a design which he calls ‘Tree of Life.’ The design features icons and symbols associated with the city’s culture and heritage intertwined with the roots and branches of an oak tree.

The design has been printed on six individual 24” x 36” canvases which will be used for a series of pop-up painting events scheduled throughout the community from now until the end of December. During the pop-up activities, community members will have the opportunity to paint the designs and take part in collaboration efforts for the mural. Once the mural is complete, the panels will be brought together to create a finished commemorative art piece, which will be unveiled at a special ceremony at City Hall being planned for early next year.
This project is supported by a grant from the Louisiana Division of the Arts, Office of Cultural Development, Department of Culture, Recreation and Tourism in cooperation with the Louisiana State Arts Council, administered by the Acadiana Center for the Arts.

For more information about Celebrate Opelousas 300, visit www.cityofopelousas.com or email tourism@cityofopelousas.com

Photo 1: Artist Jerome Ford
Photo 2: Melissa Arclise works on the community mural at Louisiana Family Fitness.