For the first time ever, the Buffalo AKG Museum of Art collaborated with the Buffalo City Housing Department to decorate one of its public housing buildings with a mural. In the case of the 10-story Lyndon B. Johnson (LBJ) Apartment Tower, we are talking about the massive mural that covers the entire west wall of the tower. It will be clearly visible to drivers along the Sukajakada highway.
The commissioned mural will be painted by Aaron Leahill, a Canadian artist currently based in Brooklyn. His large-scale dramatic works are considered to be sacred in nature, accelerating in movement and to a provocative range.
“Since the project began nearly two years ago, the residents of LBJ Apartments have welcomed us into their homes and worked with us every step of the way,” said Janne Syren, Buffalo AKG’s Peggy Pearce Elfbin Director. “We are honored to have facilitated the production of Aaron Leahill’s incredible artwork depicting people from LBJ’s remarkable and close-knit community. We sincerely hope this project is the beginning of a long-term partnership between Buffalo AKG, BMHA, and public housing residents across Buffalo.”
“We are very grateful to AKG for initiating a first-of-its-kind partnership with the housing authority. The Public Art staff took the time to meet with residents multiple times to ensure that the process was citizen-driven,” said BMHA Executive Director Jillian D. Brown. “We are honored to work with an artist like Lee Hill and look forward to continuing our collaboration with AKG on projects that increase residents’ access and exposure to AKG’s resources.”
This spectacular mural project took two years to create, involving residents of LBJ Apartments, representatives from Canisius College and Sisters Hospital, and local residents. To ensure the longevity of the mural, the west wall of the building was repaired earlier this year and is now being pressure washed and “buffed” with a base coat of paint.
Lee Hill began work on the mural on August 2nd and plans to complete it by August 15th. The design of the mural is currently a secret, known only to the participating organizations. This is AKG’s tallest mural project to date.
LBJ Apartments are located at 167 Humboldt Pkwy, Buffalo, NY 14214.