November 27, 2019
The mural entitled “In Our Home” that was unveiled in Fields Corner last weekend depicts a colorful setting of a table at dinner time. The mural’s creator, Rixy Fernandez, an artist based at Dorchester Art Project (DAP) whose family home stands just blocks from the mural, said she chose the theme of food as a symbol of what the neighborhood shares in common.
“We really wanted to incorporate all these aspects about the community and the demographics and how diverse this community is, and I feel like the biggest way that we have a lot of differences and similarities is within our food,” Fernandez said.
“This area is very Asian and Caribbean,” she added, “and there’s a lot of differences between our cultures, but at the same time we eat a lot of the same foods and have a lot of the same perspectives and intentions. So, it was really nice to be able to put things that are very specific to our culture, but other cultures might interpret it in other ways. So that way it was very fluid and ambiguous.”
The mural, which was commissioned by Fields Corner Main Streets and DAP and made possible through a 2019 Innovation Grant from the Boston Main Streets Foundation, is located on a wall near the Fields Corner T stop and the Hien Vuong Vietnamese restaurant. It includes portraits of foods like rice, avocado, and fish, which, Fernandez explained, are common in Latin American cultures like her own, but also in Vietnamese culture and other ethicities represented in the diverse demographics of the neighborhood.
“Rice from every country tastes so different,” she noted, yet the staple serves as a common thread through various different communities.
At the base of the mural, dozens of signatures from community members create a pattern on the tablecloth that adds a direct community connection to the piece, said Fernandez.
“I had my uncle and my mom come through, and my cousins, a lot of random people off the street, kids, older people, folks from DAP,” she said. “So it was really special to have that aspect of it and have the community be a part of it.”
Fernandez, who painted the mural over the course of the last month, said the experience was personally rewarding.
“I’m extremely thankful for Fields Corner Main Streets and for DAP,” she said. “It meant a lot more than just putting paint on the wall.”
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