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  • Taino Indians
  • Taino Indians
  • Taino Indians
  • Taino Indians
  • Taino Indians
  • Taino Indians

Taino Indians

Artist:

Rafael Rivera Garcia; restoration by Mayor's Mural Crew

Location:

Perkins St. and Centre St., behind Hi-Lo Supermarket  

Location

Perkins St. and Centre St., behind Hi-Lo Supermarket
United States
42° 19' 17.994" N, 71° 6' 39.4452" W

Neighborhood:

Jamaica Plain

Type:

Mural

Year:

1984 / 2003

Medium:

Acrylic paint

Collection:

Funders:

Unknown

Description:

This vibrant mural on Perkins Street has been a neighborhood landmark for more than 30 years. The original mural was created by Rafael Rivera Garcia, a Puerto Rican artist and university professor. Much of Rivera Garcia’s art features the myths and culture of the Taino people, indigenous inhabitants of the Caribbean. This mural features the Huraca’n, meaning literally “center of the storm”—a word later adopted by the Spaniards to describe tropical cyclones. The Huraca’n trio is made up of the angry wind goddess Guabancex and her two helpers, the gods Guatauba and Coatrisque, who stir up the lightning and the water.

By 2001, the mural was in urgent need of restoration: the original paint was faded and peeling, with further damage caused by water and graffiti. Hoping to preserve it, the Hyde/Jackson Square Main Street association contacted Heidi Schork and the Mayor’s Mural Crew. When Schork and her group of teenage artists began work on the restoration, no original drawings of the mural were available, and the wall was so damaged that determining the original colors and design was, as Schork described it, “akin to an archeological project.” The crew strove to replicate Rivera Garcia’s original intentions.

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