The recent completion of a mural on a protective barrier wall in front of the City of Palmdale’s Parks and Recreation offices on 10th Street East, is helping send the message that #PalmdaleCares about its community.
“Since the pandemic began, City staff has working tirelessly to protect and provide public safety and other vital services for our residents during this extraordinarily tough time,” said Palmdale Mayor Steve Hofbauer. “We have partnered with the Los Angeles Department of Public Health and Palmdale Regional Medical Center to establishing a drive-through testing center at Antelope Valley Mall. Through our South Antelope Valley Emergency Services (SAVES) program and Legacy Commons for Active Seniors, we are providing food service to vulnerable residents in our community, including seniors, and free childcare services for essential workers and first responders. Our Communications team is assisting local schools with video production for graduations messages, and our offices have remained open to conduct inspections and businesses so that people can keep working. It’s all a part of how much we all care about this community.”
“PalmdaleCares represents the City’s ongoing commitment to our residents to provide creative and resourceful leadership through this crisis and into a better tomorrow,” said Palmdale Councilmember Austin Bishop.
The City is also taking proactive steps to ensure a strong economic recovery by partnering with local employers — including small business owners and aerospace industry leaders — to developed an economic development plan that will help all businesses reopen safely and thrive again as quickly as possible. This plan has been hailed as a model for other cities.
Other programs such as mental health virtual town halls, business town halls, online virtual recreational opportunities, a weekend of prayer at Poncitlán Square, a Peace Officers Memorial Service, and a Memorial Day service were all in response to local needs during the pandemic. Public art, too, has played a role in community engagement, with opportunities offered to local artists to create a mural at the new Courson Park pool.
“I wanted to have the #PalmdaleCares message in the streets and a small mural seemed like the best way to share this visual and jumpstart our public art program at the same time,” said Palmdale’s Public Art Coordinator George Davis. “It helps illustrate how a calculated splash of color can transform even the most uninteresting spaces into focal points in our community.”
The mural was painted by Nuri Amanatullah, an Antelope Valley artist, illustrator, and muralist. It was based on a logo created by the City’s Sponsorship and Marketing Specialist Stella Knight, who designed it to graphically represent the #PalmdaleCares movement.
Some of Amanatullah’s previous clients include AirBnb, Uber, and Disney. He was a participant in Pow! Wow! Antelope Valley mural festival in 2018, the Flint Free City Mural Festival in 2019 and has since enjoyed painting various walls around the Antelope Valley as one half of the muralist-team, Kokonuri. He just published his first picture book, E-i-e-i-Art, and also works as the art director and art instructor for Housing Corporation of America, a non-profit that provides enrichment programs at affordable housing in both Palmdale and Lancaster.
“Although the #PalmdaleCares campaign was launched in response to COVID-19, the spirit of the program demonstrates the spirit of our community: neighbors helping neighbors, business helping business, and coming together to support one another,” said Palmdale City Manager J.J. Murphy.
For more information, please call 661/267-5611.
About the City’s Public Art Program
As the City of Palmdale continues to strategize effective methods to increase community engagement, pride and identity, public art emerged as a practical and creative outlet to both engage and inspire the community.
The enthusiasm and support for public art prompted the City to develop a strategic approach to how it will fund, manage, and review public art projects going forward. Many reoccurring themes were identified to include beliefs that public art promotes experiential learning, celebrates the spirit of creativity, defines neighborhoods, reinforces a sense of community pride and provides a connection to local history and culture. Key recommendations in the Public Art Master Plan are to use public art as a tool for community empowerment, to enhance neighborhood character, and for equitable geographic distribution of artwork to residents citywide.
For information on the Public Art Program, please call 661/267-5611.