graphic by Khyristin Richardson and Skip Sanders

September 8, the Top 10 Mural Cities will Convene for a Public Summit

Lacey Holmes
Submitted on

Registration is now open for the National Street Art Summit being hosted by Detroit and Philadelphia, cities named by USA Today and a panel of judges in the Top Ten Cities in America with beautiful street art.

Register for the summit at National Street Art Summit.

The summit, which is being held in conjunction with the nationally renowned BLKOUT Walls mural festival, will bring arts leaders from the Top Ten cities together at 3 p.m. Friday, September 8, to have a conversation about the rising mural movement in America, what cities are doing to encourage mural art, what cities can learn from each other and what ideas can be exchanged to make life easier for the artists. Philadelphia is No. 1, and Detroit is No. 5 on the 2023 list.

The summit’s special guest is Sydney James, the eminent muralist who co-founded BLKOUT Walls.

The Summit will be held at the Wayne County Community College District’s Curtis L. Ivery Downtown Campus, 1001 West Fort Street. WCCCD, a partner on the summit, also will host an entrepreneurial workshop for students and emerging artists the day before the summit. And Top Ten Cities guests will take a mural tour of Detroit street art the day after the summit.

The Student Mural Workshop is by invitation-only for participants from the College for Creative Studies, DPSCD and WCCCD.
“Murals, as an art form, are not just being accepted, but are being celebrated in America,” said Rochelle Riley, Detroit’s director of Arts and Culture. “We are thrilled to partner with Mural Arts Philadelphia to continue to make the creative arts a part of any conversation about what is making cities better and more beautiful.”

Jane Golden of Mural Arts Philadelphia, agreed.

"Public art is a powerful medium that can transform urban spaces and fuel social change," said Golden, Executive Director of Mural Arts Philadelphia. "This partnership between Detroit and Philadelphia emphasizes the vital role that creativity plays in our cities, while opening up new opportunities for muralists nationwide. Together, we're pushing forward the conversation on mural art and its potential to beautify, inspire, and empower communities."

The conversation will occur on the eve of BLKOUT Walls, the national festival conceived by celebrated artists Sydney James of Detroit, Thomas “Detour” Evans of Denver and Max Sansing of Chicago in response to their shared history of participating in mural festivals with no remuneration for participating artists and with limited racial diversity. The trio kicked off the brand in Detroit in 2021.