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Three heroes to join Danbury's native daughter Marian Anderson on nearby downtown mural

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July 27, 2021

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Three heroes to join Danbury's native daughter Marian Anderson on nearby downtown mural

Rob Ryser | July 27, 2021

DANBURY — Famous daughter Marian Anderson will have company when an artist paints her mural on a downtown wall later this year.

The portraits of slain president John F. Kennedy, slain civil rights hero Martin Luther King Jr. and the late Supreme Court justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg have been commissioned for a wall overlooking Kennedy Park, next to the portrait of Anderson that will replace the mural behind the Kennedy Park fountain.

Ryan Christenson, a North Haven artist who goes by the street name, ARCY, is painting the Kennedy, King and Bader mural under the title, “Legends Live Forever.”

“Throughout history, many have created change, many have left their mark,” ARCY said in a prepared release. “Through the echoes of the past, we find pride in our predecessors, we honor their story, we communicate their words, and we display their actions.”

The legends mural, which is scheduled to be complete and unveiled on Monday, was commissioned by CityCenter Danbury, in partnership with RiseUP for Arts/CT Murals, DaSilva Realty and City Hall.

The mural will likely be finished before the mural of Anderson, an opera singer from Danbury who gave a rousing performance on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in 1939 after Constitution Hall barred her because she was Black.

“As for the Marian Anderson mural we are finalizing the call to artists with the city of Danbury,” said Angela Wong, CityCenter executive director.

Wong said the building fronts facing Kennedy Park were “an ideal canvas to support ambitious and meaningful” projects.

“This is another exciting step toward bringing more art, culture and vibrancy to downtown Danbury,” she said.

rryser@newstimes.com 203-731-3342rryser@newstimes.com 203-731-3342