POW! WOW! Antelope Valley Murals
The union of muralists and public spaces has proliferated in cities across the country; Lancaster among them. For the second time, the City hosted the international POW! WOW! tour. Muralists and other street artists, local and abroad, spend weeks creating breathtaking murals and installations in Lancaster’s BLVD district.
POW! WOW! originated in Hawaii, a concept created by Jasper Wong to celebrate culture, music and art. Wong is a Chinese-American artist, illustrator and curator whose inspiration for POW! WOW! came from the desire to create an environment to bring people together and expose the creative process to the public.
The artists arrived in Lancaster during an October heat wave to make over the City’s buildings and public spaces. Day by day, waves of color flooded Lancaster Boulevard; each mural with its own distinctive style and theme. While the muralists drew their inspiration from various sources, many of the murals reflect imagery and symbolism found in the Antelope Valley.
Emily Ding’s spectacular tortoise and hare mural features one of the Valley’s signature characteristics—the California Poppy. Texas-based Ding often features large animals in her work; her piece titled “Run on for a Long Time” can be found on the Lancaster Optometry building.
Scott Listfield’s astronaut-themed mural fits right in here in the aerospace capital of California. “I wanted the setting of my mural to feel local, and also a bit otherworldly,” said Listfield. His ongoing series of paintings features astronauts exploring odd, but familiar worlds and can be seen across the country.
Nuri Amanatullah, a well-known local artist, has several commissioned pieces in his hometown. With Antelope Valley influences throughout his work, he is best known for his retro portrayals of pop culture and animalistic fantasies. He is the directing instructor for a variety of art programs at affordable income housing properties on behalf of the Housing Corporation of America.
POW! WOW! Antelope Valley would not be possible without the dedication of Andi Campognone, the manager and curator of the Lancaster Museum of Art & History (MOAH). For eight years, Campognone has elevated the City to become a premier art destination, and her connections in the art community have brought new talent to Lancaster. To pull off the massive POW! WOW! feat, Campognone worked closely with Andrew Hosner, owner of Thinkspace Gallery, who curated the art on display in MOAH and throughout the City.
The next POW! WOW! Antelope Valley mural event will take place in 2020 and will expand outside of the Lancaster’s downtown area into residential neighborhoods.
To find out more about the murals and artists, visit lancastermoah.org/powwow.