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Office of Economic Development
Office of Economic Development

July 14, 2003


Famous mural has resided in Council chambers for 30 years.  It will return in two years after national tour and display at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C.

Berkeley, CA – After thirty years as the famous backdrop to the Berkeley City Council, Romare Bearden’s mural is heading out to see the country.  The Council will hold a ceremony during its July 15th meeting to formally send it off. 

Peter Selz and Carl Worth, both former Civic Arts Commissioners involved with the original commission of the piece, will participate in the ceremony.

The National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC is currently preparing a retrospective of Romare Bearden's life work and has requested that the City loan the mural for the exhibition.  The mural, Berkeley-The City and Its People, is a complex collage of photographs and colored papers on seven panels that together measure 10 by 16 feet.

Since 1973, its home has been in the City Council Chambers immediately behind the dais from which the Mayor and City Council Members preside over city government.  This beautiful piece of art will be the highlight of the exhibit after it opens on September 14th at the National Gallery of Art.  From there, the exhibit will travel to New York, Atlanta, Dallas and San Francisco.  It will return home to Berkeley in April 2005.

WHAT:            Romare Bearden Mural Send Off Ceremony

WHERE:          City Council Chambers
                         2134 Martin Luther King, Jr. Way

WHEN:           Tuesday, July 15
                       8:00 p.m.



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