In the fall of 2014, the Philadelphia Eagles, in collaboration with the City of Philadelphia Mural Arts Program, set out to imagine a new mural for the building on Darien Street that rests directly across from Lincoln Financial Field.
The Eagles wanted a way to capture the incredible relationship that exists between the city of Philadelphia and its professional football team. The Darien Street mural – “Our City, Our Team” - is designed not to honor particular players or even historic moments, but what the Eagles mean to the city of Philadelphia and what the city and its people mean to the Eagles.
That connection is captured with images of Eagles players, the team’s passionate fans, the Philadelphia skyline and the building that ties everything together on fall Sundays - Lincoln Financial Field.
While the design was conceived by Eagles graphic designer Christine Dorn, working in partnership with muralists Phillip Adams and Jon Laidacker, a good portion of the actual painting was done by Eagles season ticket members. Eagles players, as well as staff members, also picked up a paintbrush for this special project which took place over the course of four community paint days in November of 2014.
Artists Adams and Laidacker and their team at Mural Arts made the project a reality over the winter and into the spring of 2015.
Application to the wall began in May when six mural-installation specialists began the task of affixing 688 five-by-five pieces of parachute cloth using a non-pigmented bonding agent, known as Nova Gel, to the wall. The parachute cloth serves as the perfect mural medium, as the five-by-five sections allow many people to paint on a project. Its sturdy material actually holds color better than brick or other building façade materials.
After the initial wall application, artists from the Philadelphia Mural Arts Program put the finishing touches on the mural.
The 17,000 square-foot mural, which took more than 2,900 man hours and 386 gallons of paint to create, is the second-largest mural in the city of Philadelphia and the fifth-largest in the nation.
A dedication ceremony for the new Darien Street mural was held on July 23, 2015, giving fans plenty of time to enjoy it when the Eagles open Training Camp to kick off the 2015 NFL season.
The Eagles and the Mural Arts Program teamed up with nearly 1,000 season ticket members to work side by side on a massive mural that aims to captures the unique relationship that exists between the city, the team, and its fans. In the months during the creation of the mural, the project was brought to life with the help of Eagles players, staff, fans and artists, who devoted more than 2,900 hours of work to create the mural which is now proudly displayed on Darien Street across from Lincoln Financial Field.
The Mural Arts Program is the nation’s largest public art program, dedicated to the belief that art ignites change. For nearly 30 years, the Mural Arts Program has united artists and communities through a collaborative process, rooted in the traditions of mural-making, to create art that transforms public spaces and individual lives. Mural Arts engages communities in 50 to 100 mural and public art projects each year, including a restoration program that maintains the collection. The murals also create unique project-based learning opportunities for thousands of youth and adults in the Art Education for Youth, Restorative Justice, and Behavioral Health programs. The Mural Arts Program has created over 3,600 murals and works of public art, earning Philadelphia international recognition as the “City of Murals.” Each year, 14,000 residents and visitors tour the Mural Arts Program’s outdoor art gallery, which has become part of Philadelphia’s civic landscape and a source of pride and inspiration.
Phillip Adams is an artist based out of Philadelphia. Adams received his BFA in Painting from the University of Georgia and his MFA in Painting from the University of Pennsylvania. He has worked with the Mural Arts Program for 10 years in variety of positions from lead artist to educator. He has completed over 20 murals with the Mural Arts Program, as well as featuring his public art in other cities nationally and internationally. Adams’ work has also been exhibited in Philadelphia at Seraphin Gallery, Arcadia University, Moore College of Art, University of Pennsylvania, Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia Museum of Art, Tiger Strikes Asteroid (founding member), and Bridgette Mayer Gallery. His work has also been included in exhibitions in Baltimore, Washington DC, Texas, and Georgia. He is represented by Seraphin Gallery in Philadelphia.
Jonathan Laidacker graduated from Mansfield University in 2003 with a degree in studio art and moved to Pittsburgh, PA shortly thereafter. While looking for a place to start his career, Laidacker responded to an advertisement in the Pittsburgh Tribune for the Sprout Fund’s “Mural Season” and began painting murals throughout Pittsburgh. In 2005, after gaining experience as a muralist, Laidacker moved to Philadelphia to work with the Philadelphia Mural Arts Program. Now a resident of Philadelphia for more than eight years, Laidacker has since earned a Master’s in Fine Arts from the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts (’07), has led 20 community mural projects throughout the city and has conducted a number of community painting workshops. In 2011, Laidacker completed production on a project with the Mural Arts Program titled “How Philly Moves” at the Philadelphia International Airport. “How Philly Moves” was a collaborative project with photographer and designer JJ Tiziou based on Tiziou’s on-going photo project of the same name. A team of seven assistants and more than 1,000 volunteers helped Laidacker complete the largest mural that Philadelphia has ever seen in just under a year.
Christine (Greany) Dorn received a Bachelor of Arts in graphic design from The University of the Arts in Philadelphia in 2001 and earned her Master’s in Image and Communication from Goldsmiths, University of London in 2003. Upon returning to the United States in 2003, Dorn was hired as a Graphic Design Instructor at The Art Institute of Philadelphia and began teaching classes in typography, layout design, corporate identity, portfolio preparation and more. While teaching at The Art Institute, Dorn continued to advance her own design career and served as the art director for News-Line Publishing from 2004-09. As Art Director, Dorn was responsible for the design and production of numerous monthly national healthcare magazines. From 2010-13, Dorn held the title of Senior Graphic Designer at The Institutes in Malvern, Pa., and helped to develop creative and innovative design solutions for the marketing and production of insurance education content for digital, print and mobile platforms. Dorn joined the Philadelphia Eagles as a Graphic Designer in 2013 and is tasked with utilizing the latest technology to produce print and digital media assets for the organization. Dorn began working on the concept for the Eagles Fan Wall Mural in 2014 and the final design reflects her connection and love for the city of Philadelphia and its vibrant arts culture.