Artist: Susan Bowen
Location: Roberto Troup Magnet Academy of Science. 259 Edgewood Avenue.
Susan Bowen’s work at the renovated Troup Magnet Academy of Science is one of the few public art works in the City of New Haven to address the work that labor activists undertook during the second half of the 20th century. The placement of this topic at this school is intentional: the school is named for August Lewis Troup, who was a labor organizer and journalist in New Haven. Many of the historic photographs chosen by Bowen for the mural cycle were taken by Virginia Blaisdell, who has been documenting New Haven labor activity for more than four decades. While Bowen’s work commemorates activists in New Haven in mural form, this mural cycle appears in a school already blessed with an abundance of mural art: Troup contains the largest number of Works Project Administration (WPA) murals in the city. The Percent-for-Art program is similar to the circa 1930s WPA program in that both government sponsored art programs provide works of art to public spaces, thereby documenting, inspiring and decorating our everyday world.
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