Personal Renaissance

About The Project


James Burns

Completion Date

1 September 2010


4th and Berks Streets

photo by Mustafah Abdulaziz

* For video, documentary and portrait photography, additional images and more, check out Personal Rensassance on the Mural Explorer.

At JEVS Human Services in North Philadelphia, which provides methadone, counseling and other addiction treatment services, muralist James Burns worked with clients to develop a mural entitled Personal Renaissance, that illustrates the path to recovery from addiction.  The mural’s symbolic imagery, which includes city buildings, machinery cogs, the cross section of a house and a vessel offered solemnly to the viewer, was inspired by the clients’ poetry, which they wrote in workshops led by Ursula Rucker, a spoken-word artist.

Mural Arts reached out to the neighborhood surrounding JEVS, inviting community residents to work alongside clients to create the mural.  This project provided a unique occasion for neighbors of JEVS to enter the facility, learn about the valuable services it provides, and make a personal connection to those in the recovery community.