INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — GANGGANG, an organization that supports artists, kicked off its inaugural BUTTER Art Fair Wednesday with the unveiling of a new 3D mural. Local celebrities helped get the event underway, including longtime Hollywood actress and Indianapolis native Vivica A. Fox.
The mural is a monument to Indianapolis’ Black culture, and the to the keepers of the culture.
On 90-by-40 foot black canvas at the corner of Senate Avenue and 11th Street are the faces of eight black Hoosiers painted by local artist Ashley Nora, who addressed those in attendance.
“We can do this, we are the culture. In Indianapolis, we are so talented,” she said.
Some depicted are no longer alive, but it shows others who’ve left their mark nationally, such as the actress, entrepreneur and author Fox.
“I left here one month after I graduated from high school in search of a dream that I have been able to live out beyond my wildest expectations,” she said.
The mural also recognized those who have left their mark locally, like Mariah Ivey.
“I think this is a huge statement to say, ‘Hey, we are here. We’ve been here,'” Ivey said.
But each of the people here are holding space for anyone with a dream of building on Black culture through art and creativity.
That’s been GANGGANG’s goal since forming about a year ago. The mural sits near the entrance to the historic Indiana Avenue District. Inside the Stutz Business Center is another creation: BUTTER, a showcase of art from more than 30 Indianapolis artists and creatives.
“It challenges how we appreciate fine art in the sense of art created by Black people,” GANGGANG co-founder Alan Bacon said.
Organizers call it a gift to Indianapolis, with others adding that it’s a vital tool to creating a solid infrastructure for the young artists who will continue to uplift and preserve culture.