Last week we spotted some scaffolding up over Keith Haring’s iconic mural at 22nd and Ellsworth, and after a brief moment of anxiety, we quickly realized that the Mural Arts Program was starting to restore the mural.
There was a bit of a fright among mural-lovers last year when the iconic mural was partially covered up by a developer who bought the building. Naked Philly went so far as to say Art Assaulted at 22nd and Ellsworth as stucco started creeping over the edges of the painting.
But that fear was soon mitigated when several local websites learned that the developer needed to stabilize the wall to keep the whole damn thing from falling down. Meanwhile, the Mural Arts Program got involved and helped raise money to start making improvements to the little park next to it.
And the one tree is gone, as seen in this Google Streetview screen grab from August 2009.
Curbed Philly said last year that MAP was hoping to have the restoration finished by May 5.
MAP met with some folks from the Keith Haring Foundation and the mural will be restored, hopefully in time for a dedication on May 4, which would have been Haring’s 55th birthday. The garden in front of the mural may also get a new fence and embellishments, and, says Golden, “everyone is excited.”
CLARIFICATION: An earlier version of this post suggested that Mural Arts was nearly done with a restoration, but actually, they are just beginning. Also, more changes are planned for the park and the fence is but the first. Thanks to Kate Jacobi, the Mural Arts project manager for this, for reaching out to set us straight.