San Luis Obispo Museum of Art unveils outdoor mural ‘Pacificaribbean’
–On Saturday, Jan 9, San Luis Obispo Museum of Art (SLOMA) unveiled its first-ever outdoor mural, which covers all four sides of the building in Downtown San Luis Obispo.
“It’s more than just a mural; it’s the beginning of a new era of public engagement for the museum,” said Executive Director Leann Standish. “’Pacificaribbean’ highlights the ability of the arts to bring together our global community and will surely be the first of many programs accessible to our community’s diverse audiences.”
Pacificaribbean is a large-scale mural on four walls of the San Luis Obispo Museum of Art that showcases the symbiotic relationship between art and nature. It is designed and executed by internationally renowned artist Juan Alberto Negroni, along with help from Cuesta College and Cal Poly student assistants. The project is curated by Emma Saperstein.
“We were intentional about our selection and are proud to feature an international artist whose work so perfectly exhibits the powerful and beautiful connection between cultures,” said Guest Curator Emma Saperstein. “The mural cultivates a relationship between our inner landscapes and the landscape around us, and – even amidst time of separation and grief— helps us all find windows of hope.”
Puerto Rican-born artist Juan Alberto Negroni is known for his vibrant, ecological-inspired pieces. His work has been the focus of five solo shows and is currently on display in public and private collections in Puerto Rico, United Kingdom, Argentina, Canada, Australia, Greece, and the United States.
Pacificaribbean’s concept is inspired by Negroni’s upbringing in the city of Bayamón near San Juan, Puerto Rico. It represents the luscious ecology of the region and captures a resilience of nature and a desire to embrace the unknown. The work is meant to evoke nostalgia, while encouraging a focus on the present. In the design, Negroni concentrated on the relationship between the mural and the natural environment visible above the museum, creating an unexpected symbiosis between this community and his.
This project will be paired with a catalogue of commissioned essays, an interactive element inviting the public to explore their inner landscapes through “prompt” questions, a series of programming with the artist and the community, and a custom print designed by the artist.
“We hope the outdoor mural, with its unique expression, will become a visitor destination for California travelers and residents,” Standish said. “And until museums are allowed to reopen, this piece will give a glimpse into the new and exciting things happening inside SLOMA. We are thrilled to share “Pacificaribbean” in a way that allows passersby to experience art in a large-scale, COVID-19 friendly way.”
For more information about the artist, visit juanalbertonegroni.com.