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Barelas: Intersection Mural

at 4th Street and Hazeldine

About the Project

Artful Life, in partnership with residents of the historic Barelas neighborhood, Vision Zero, the City of Albuquerque, the Barelas Community Coalition, Homewise, and Creative Paving Solutions, created an intersection mural, "The Sunset Mix," at the cross streets of 4th Street SW and Hazeldine SW in the historic Barelas neighborhood of Albuquerque, New Mexico.

The design of the intersection mural was created by a team of teens (working with a professional artist) who are residents of Barelas after outreach and engagement with their neighbors.


Artful Life recruited the eight-member youth artist team in the fall of October 2019. From the beginning, the teens engaged in team building and co-created art under the care of team coordinator Maria Teresa Bustamante Herrera. The team conducted a neighborhood survey of stories and perspectives of residents by going door-to-door to talk with residents. From the beginning, Artful Life paid each teen $15/hour for their work.

The Barelas Youth Artist Team included Delilah Montoya, Joseph Furlow, Angelina Lucero, Mercedes Perez-Chavez, Lina Sanchez, Delilah Tapia, Jaylene Torres, Danna Velasquez, and Dante Wisch. Each teen brought neighborhood perspectives and art to the mural design, making it a place- and people-based mural.

In the fall of 2020, Artful Life and Vision Zero began a partnership to undertake the first intersection mural in the City of Albuquerque. Because of the work of the youth team--fulfilling the Artful Life model of community-generated works of art--locating the mural in Barelas was especially fitting.  The site also enables Vision Zero to address the issue of traffic safety on one of the main thoroughfares in the neighborhood.

The purpose of mural, in addition to creating a beautiful and meaningful work of public art, is to fulfill the purpose of Artful Life’s arts and community development model and Vision Zero’s strategy to mitigate traffic fatalities and increase safe, healthy, equitable mobility through creative community engagement, cooperation, and collaboration.

In January of 2021, Reyes Padilla joined the team as collaborative artist for this particular project and engaged the teens in co-creating a final design inspired by community outreach and input. The mural was installed on April 23-25, 2021.

This project would not be possible without our generous funders--McCune Charitable Foundation, City of Albuquerque, New Mexico Arts--and our wonderful project partners:  City of Albuquerque Vision Zero Initiative, City of Albuquerque Public Art, Barelas Community Coalition, Creative Paving Solutions, Homewise, Secret Gallery/B. Ruppe, ABQ Artwalk. Special thanks to the Barelas Neighborhood Association, Encuentro, El Centro de Igualdad y Derechos and, most of all, the residents of Barelas.

Thanks to our wonderful project partner, Creative Paving Solutions, and its photographer/videographer,

Hans Beimler, we have drone footage of the mural in progress.

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