Helena Metaferia’s restoration of iconic African American figures was part of a larger effort to spruce up the aging center as the neighborhood added population and amenities in the 2000s. Metaferia, an artist associated with the Latin American Youth Center, repositioned the images of Thurgood Marshall, Mary McCleod Bethune, Frederick Douglass, and Malcolm X within an exuberant and colorful design including youth at play. Although some longtime residents were attached to the original concept, the artist incorporated suggestions and brought the community together around the project. The title and theme are appropriate–Parkview, near Howard University, was one of the first neighborhoods in Washington to be integrated.
Sponsor: DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities and the Latin American Youth Center
Artist: Helena Metaferia