Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Peace and Love

San Francisco is rich with great public art (and some not so great, but let's not go there), so much so that sometimes some of the best, if not in a prime tourist zone like the Embarcadero or a neighborhood known for it like the Mission, gets overlooked. Welcome to the Western Addition Peace Wall at Daniel Koshland Park at Page and Buchanan, a labor of love over many years by people in Hayes Valley and the Western Addition who had enough of the cycle of violence in their neighborhoods and chose to send a message. The Wall is a series of tiles painted by local kids and other neighborhood residents representing their vision of a peaceful world. Stretching around the corner and down the block in exuberant colors and images, the Wall honors families who have lost a loved one to violence. Someone I consider a mentor once said that public art should have historic, cultural or geographic relevance to its site. The Peace Wall is all that. When friends come to visit, rather than taking them to an insipid bow and arrow by the bay (oops!), go gaze at our Peace Wall instead.


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