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NEA awards SHINE $25,000 for unity mural project

Bill DeYoung

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Photo: stpetemuraltour.com

The National Endowment for the Arts has granted St. Petersburg’s SHINE Mural Festival $25,000 for its SHINE On Unity Project.

There are two parts to the project. One will consist of four murals celebrating the history and cultural identity of the city’s historically Black neighborhoods; the other will celebrate St. Pete Pride’s 20th anniversary by using mural art to promote unity, diversity and visibility for the LGBTQIA+ community.

Exact locations and artist details will be announced over the coming months, according to festival director Jenee Priebe.

“SHINE has always been about the power of art in public spaces,” Priebe said. “These funds from the NEA allow us to put additional focus on neighborhoods outside the art districts where we typically work, as well as build off our partnership with St. Pete Pride to further use murals to support diversity and inclusion.”

The NEA funds, she added, come as a matching grant. “We are still looking for a funder to match the grant.”

It is part of the first round of fiscal year 2022 funding in the NEA’s Grants for Arts Projects category.

Created and operated under the auspices of the St. Petersburg Arts Alliance, the SHINE Mural Festival – now in its eighth year – takes over downtown in October or November.

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