Richmond Art Center Richmond Art Center

Epic Struggle / Battle Royal: Mural Unveiling

Epic Struggle / Battle Royal: Mural Unveiling

Friday, September 22, 2023, 5pm-8pm

Richmond Art Center, 2540 Barrett Avenue, Richmond, CA


Join us on Friday, September 22, 5pm-8pm for a reception to celebrate the launch of Richmond Art Center’s new mural, Epic Struggle / Battle Royal.

This mural was created throughout the summer of 2023 in the S.P.O.T.S. youth public arts program. Students in the class explored ways in which to combine muralismo, technology, advocacy and storytelling.

Epic Struggle / Battle Royal features ‘touch points’ and sounds for interactive engagement with the mural’s characters. Heroes or villains? You decide!

In addition to the mural unveiling, students from the S.P.O.T.S. program will also showcase their solo paintings as part of the Greenhouse Live: Youth Art Showcase.

Artists: Martin Cabrales, Yahir Garcia, Mariella Gutiérrez, Israel Macedo, Jonathan Paz Pureco, Carlos Poblano, Giselle Reyes, Sebastian Vela

Lead Artists/Directors: Keena Romano, Fredericko Alvarado

Special thanks to Vince De Jesus for his assistance making the mural interactive.

Thanks also artists Yasmin Shi Shi Madriz and David Burke.


Mariella Gutierrez

My part of the mural represents the nature and creativity that we want to preserve and treasure in the Bay Area. It features an artist, a deer, poppies, lavender flowers, and trees. We see all of these things here in Richmond and that is why I thought it was important to include in the painting. Working with a team to design a mural can be tricky at times, because it is hard to fit in all of your ideas with everybody else’s, but I am very happy with the parts that were designed by me and I feel represented within this work. I am an artist because all kinds of artistic mediums interest me [painting, drawing, film, photography, dance, music, writing] and I don’t think I could live without them. It may sound dramatic, but there is no other way to describe art but life support. I love to draw and animate, and I spend most of my time doing or thinking about those things. I want my art to induce the full range of human emotion. Shock, Anger, Happiness, Sorrow, etc. I want to make people feel things and I want them to look at my creations and come out thinking about things they hadn’t thought about before. Now that doesn’t necessarily apply to my work on this mural, but it does with my personal work. You can reach me on instagram @mariellacgutierrez where I post fashion art and drawings. 

Israel Macedo

Most of what I contributed to the mural doesn’t have much meaning to it. The only thing that does have thought put into it is the Chevron imp. An imp is a type of devil, a mischievous one for those who don’t know; I decided to portray Chevron as one. For a corporation that’s meant to provide for us, it sure does a lot of damage to the environment and the city of Richmond as a whole. The other things I contributed to the mural were a gnome and a robot. It felt strange working with others and it was pretty difficult trying to put all of our ideas together. Because of this I’m a little bit unsatisfied with what I designed; I settled with designs of mine that didn’t represent my best work because my other designs wouldn’t fit in, but that’s okay. I’m an artist because I like the idea of creating something fresh, something people haven’t seen or thought of before. I usually apply this to creature designing; it’s fascinating to think about the endless possibilities biology and evolution can hold. I couldn’t really apply my creature designs to this mural, but that’s also okay. Check out my instagram @itzmilkyyyy if you want to check out some of my stuff.

Giselle Reyes 

What I contributed to the mural is healing and nature. What I did was mother nature. She is a good person as you can see on the other side where it’s in bad condition but what she is doing is healing the place and putting on plants for it to grow. Working with a team is not that bad for my first time and it’s fun. Working with a team is also saying your ideas and listening to others about what they have and what they can do. It also puts all of our ideas all together. It’s hard to do also because sometimes we don’t know what to do but also one another will help what to do. What motivated me is seeing family members and family friends’ art and seeing people buying them because they love the art and details on it. And how everyone supports me for painting and would have the time to take me to my classes for me to have a fun time and learn new things. I want people to notice the hard work I put into my work and how I also put my whole heart into it. For the people to see my art would make an account and post my art and what I do and how to do this and that.

Jonathan Paz Pureco

First of all I want to start by saying it was a pleasure to work in a team because it was fun and I got to see everyone’s art style. My contribution to our design was a godzilla shaped monster which represents chevron, AI turning against humans, probably the elephant,  and introducing the theme of “THE END OF THE WORLD” to our mural. My motivation to do art is when my art starts to take shape, I prefer to use acrylics over basically any other paint because, Yes… and I hope to inspire others to take an interest in art or something. I hope to invite others to connect with my art by spreading art throughout the world or by putting my art on a wall in a public place 🙂

Yahir Garcia Ramirez

I will say that the time spent here in the program with all the people was a blast because everyone in the program is nice with all of us being able to bring all of our ideas into one big idea starting with everyone introducing possible topics/themes for the mural with Nature, State of Animaton, and AI being the major focus with everyone then creating little sketches of our characters/objects such as a Mushroom, Gnome, and the Bridge with the stars being the piece of the mural i contributed though the bridge was originally going to have no stars and have dark colors but then decided to bring in stars and make the colors lighter to represent the colors of peace.The Motivation of the Bridge with stars mostly involved medieval bridges along with Change and Peace and how someone can see the harsh reality of our world and have the determination to fight back the common issues in our world. Believe it or not, the bridge with stars I made wasn’t supposed to be a bridge, it was supposed to be mother nature with me ultimately not liking the idea with me deciding to give the idea of mother nature to someone else. For me as a student here, what motivates me to do art 2D animation specifically from the 20’s, 30’s and way until the 40’s because i really admire each frame that the cartoons have with everything being animated with ink, watercolor backgrounds, and no technology. The Materials that I use when I do art are acrylic paints, watercolor paints, pencils, and sketching paper too. If at one point my art becomes recognized by the entire world, I want my art/animation to be recognized as wholesome, funny, and frantic too while I want to see my animation being able to inspire others with techniques that help animators save money. I would like to invite others to connect/view my art by allowing others to be able to mimic art styles similar to mine and starting off simple by doing simple sketching of my characters/stories. This concludes my artist statement and I hope that everyone enjoys the mural that everyone in the program worked hard to bring to life.

Carlos Poblano

Hello my name is Carlos Poblano, I started to draw when I was 9 years old I would draw people and portraits in my art class I had when i was in the 5th grade and i would also draw to home when i’m bored, I would draw cars, people and random things I can find in my room.

Drawing with the community here is great, everyone is nice and people will also give advice and what to add to your drawing, the people would suggest more details and stuff to add so everything isn’t so boring and basic, they will also keep you entertained for the 3 hours.

I added the small UFO you will see on the top of the buildings in the left side of the mural and there are two aliens in there that are controlling the ufo. The UFO I added is also exploding but it’s blue and not red because they come from space.

The things that motivate me to do art is seeing my sister painting a structure, another thing that motivates me is all the drawings I see on tiktok that also give me ideas on what to draw that is also how I got the ufo idea, when I draw I will mainly use color pencils or marker depending on what I am drawing like if i were to draw a person i will use color pencil to get more detail in.

Sebastian Vela

Doing this mural is the first art I’ve done as a team. I honestly think its pretty cool, and it helps you connect with others working as a team. Its nice seeing everyone else’s art style, and maybe taking inspiration from them. At first, I thought it would be pretty tough to decide on what to do, especially since everyone has different ideas and styles, but it turned out it was actually the opposite, and they all connect together nicely.

I made buildings, which contrast with the other side, which is all colorful and full of life, compared to the almost colorless and boring buildings, showing how everything progresses. I decided to add some color, to make it look nice, and help contrast buildings against each other, because if I didnt, you couldnt tell if it was a single building or just one big one. Also adding color can bring some hope into the painting as well.

I do art for fun, nothing really motivates me, its something I do once in a while due to how long it takes. I use whatever materials i have at home, but I paint in dark colors because all I usually have and use are pencils, which is basically just black and white. Honestly, I just want people to view my art as cool and unique. I dont mind what people think of my art, and usually my art doesnt have a message or a deep meaning behind them, I just like how they look.

I make art for myself, usually when Im bored, maybe just a quick sketch, but I really like how buildings look for some reason. Even though there arent many colors, just any shade of gray. But I dont want to make the buildings completely dull and lifeless, and want people to see them as they could still be fun. They arent completely useless and bad, maybe the materials we use are bad, but they arent to do bad, in fact they are suppose to help us.

Martin Cabrales 

Working with people on the mural was cool because it’s the first ever mural that I have done so doing it with other people and seeing there art style is cool, but it wasn’t like that at the start because people including me were shy but as more and more classes went by we talked more and got to know each other some people even brought there drawings from home to show to the class. So as people talked more and gave their ideas it was fun working with them. 

 What I contributed is a heart with a gas pump coming out of it with gas spilling from it on a building. Making the mock up was hard because as people were saying and drawing their ideas I haven’t made something to put on the mural but one day one of the teaches brought books for the class to look at so as I was going through one of the book there was this gas pump idea that I like and it fit with are theme so I changed it up a little to a heart. 

I would describe my art practices as messy because I just draw whatever I am drawing in till I like it, and some materials that i use to do that are led pencils, pens, a ruler, a eraser. 

What motivates me to do art when people look at it and they like it and it’s just fun to do. I would invite others to look at my art from them to see how it turned out and for them to like it.

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2540 Barrett Avenue
Richmond, CA 94804-1600


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