We are the Future by Dauna Jean Nobel


If the We Are the Future mural appears to be an amalgamation of styles of and symbols made by seemingly different hands, that’s because it is. The mural was a community project run through My Turn Incorporated, a New England non-profit that runs programs for low-income youth in key cities throughout the region. The teen artists that created this piece are: Jenna Bozzo, Ashley Pedro, Vivian Rodriguez, E. Peña, Lorna Parker, Jessica Ballard, Juleyci Burgos, Julissa Burgos, Allison Bonollo, Marissa Foley, Gladynet Lopez, Marena Cruz, Devin Barbosa, Clodio Monteiro, and James Mann. Lead artist Dauna Jean Nobel helped to guide the painters through the brainstorming and design process and supervised throughout the painting process.

The mural is rich with symbols of hope, passion, and beauty so important to the City of Pawtucket, and especially its youth. At the center of the mural, Earth takes its place as a means of symbolizing Pawtucket’s role in a larger picture and as a reminder of what’s being left to the children of that world. Underneath the earth, an open book points to the education so important to the people inheriting this world.  Musical notes and sports, good food and roads that lead to new discovery show us that with all these things and time, riches will follow (as represented by the clock and the treasure chest at its center).  Perhaps the most dramatic elements of the mural are the phoenix rising and the map of Pawtucket, both creating a sense of symmetry and thus becoming linked in meaning. The phoenix rising is Pawtucket rising, reborn by the hard work and inspiration of its future leaders.

My Turn, Incorporated was founded in 1984 and has since helped over 20,000 students and youth to improve their lives through education and hard work. Based on the idea that an energetic mentor and teacher can make all the difference in the development of a young mind, My Turn, Inc. was proud to give Dauna Jean Nobel such a gifted team and to witness how their shared talents provided Pawtucket with an inspiring mural.

Todd Stong




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