Jane Golden is an artist who has been an active mural painter since the 1970s. Following graduation from Stanford University, she moved to Los Angeles and created a number of large, well received murals in the Los Angeles beach areas, particularly in Santa Monica, in the late 1970s and early 1980s. She was co-founder and director of the Los Angeles Public Art Foundation.
In 1985, following a diagnosis of lupus, Golden left California to return to be with her family in the Philadelphia area, where she had grown up. She then was appointed the executive director, by the Mural Arts Program founder, then Mayor Wilson Goode, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States, in 1996. A program designed to fight graffiti in the city by giving graffiti artists a more productive artistic outlet. She quickly began working with at risk teens. Together, they began instead to paint murals in the city and were trained in practical working skills. The program grew, and the Mural Arts Program has created over 3600 murals to date.
In 2003, Jane Golden received a Visionary Woman Award from Moore College of Art & Design. Eisenhower Fellowships selected Jane Golden as a USA Eisenhower Fellow in 2003. She is an instructor at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Art and teaches at the University of Pennsylvania.
Supporters of Golden have urged her to run for Mayor of Philadelphia in 2015, an idea Golden has said she's "intrigued by."
Art and Community Initiatives
Golden has become an important voice and organizer within the community. Under her leadership, the Philadelphia Mural Arts Program actively engages with critical issues in the area. Their Porch Light program spotlights mental illness issues such as homelessness and addiction, in cooperation with the Department of Behavioral Health. Golden has taught at Graterford Prison for many years and has also spearheaded a collaborative project connecting inmates and juveniles at a correction facility with a Kensington neighborhood. Connections at Graterford brought Golden to a position where she could support conceptual artist Peggy Diggs, who worked with inmates to construct shelters for disaster survivors. Some bemoan the quality of the murals developed through local participation as a model for developing the murals, citing uneven quality, artist Stephen Powers identifies Golden's success in convincing civic authorities that art can be an agent of positive change.
- Mohatt, Nathaniel V.; Singer, Jonathan B.; Evans, Arthur C.; Matlin, Samantha L.; Golden, Jane; Harris, Cathy; Burns, James; Siciliano, Catherine; Kiernan, Guy. "A Community's Response to Suicide Through Public Art: Stakeholder Perspectives from the Finding the Light Within Project". American Journal of Community Psychology 52 (1-2): 197–209. doi:10.1007/s10464-013-9581-7. PMC 3865777. PMID 23743604.
- Kadaba, Lini S. (October 16, 2006). "Philadelphia Inquirer". Informed designs for tight spots: An artist got Graterford inmates' help with emergency furniture.
- "Letters of Love". Creative Review. January 2010. Retrieved 4 March 2016.
- Mural Arts Program
- Defining Lives: Jane Golden, Philadelphia Inquirer, July 25, 2008
- Power Lunch: Jane Golden for Mayor, Philadelphia Magazine, July 30, 2010
- Mural Arts Director Jane Golden Awarded Hepburn Medal, Bryn Mawr Now, February 11, 2009
- Biography, University of Pennsylvania
- Biography, WHYY TV
- Visionary Woman Awards, Moore College of Art & Design
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