Dreaming Big At City Hall

July 23, 2013 |  by  |  Buzz  |  ,

 

Patterns & fabrics | Photo: Bradley Maule

Patterns & fabrics | Photo: Bradley Maule

For the two months, visitors to City Hall will be stepping into a dream world. In the Northeast stairwell—the visitors entrance—the grand octagonal spiral has added a four-cornered cascading layer of fabric: Dream Flags.

Dream on, dreamers | Photo: Bradley Maule

Dream on, dreamers | Photo: Bradley Maule

Inspired by the poetry of Langston Hughes and modeled on Himalayan prayer flags, the Dream Flag project started in 2003 as a task for Jeff Harlan’s sixth grade English class at the Agnes Irwin School in Bryn Mawr. After reading Hughes’ dream poetry, students wrote their own dream poems, printed them on cloth, and tied them together, embellished by art. In the ten years since, schools from across the country and globe have written their own dreams and the flags have been exhibited in schools, hospitals, libraries, the Kimmel Center, and Cira Centre.

Stairway of Dreams, the City Hall installation, features the poetry of students from Belize, Zambia, Nepal, Texas, and of course Philadelphia. As the project aims to inspire hope, it’s no coincidence that the installation’s run, through September 27, will mark the fiftieth anniversary of Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream” speech on August 28th. (Incidentally, that same day, City Hall will host native son Kurt Vile for a free performance in the Courtyard.)

The installation is coordinated by the Art in City Hall program. Learn more about the Dream Flags Project HERE.

About the author

Bradley Maule is co-editor of the Hidden City Daily and the creator of Philly Skyline. He's a native of Tyrone, Pennsylvania, and he's hung his hat in Shippensburg, Germantown, G-Ho, Fishtown, Portland OR, Brewerytown, and now Mt. Airy. He just can't get into Twitter, but he's way into Instagram @mauleofamerica.



Leave a Reply

Comment moderation is enabled, no need to resubmit any comments posted.

 

Recent Posts
Hidden City Campaign Passes Halfway Point On Way To $30,000

Hidden City Campaign Passes Halfway Point On Way To $30,000

December 8, 2016  |  Buzz

Needed still to reach must-get goal of $30,000: about 180 readers to give $15, $25, $50, $75, or more! > more

Fade And A Shave: Inside Philly's Black Barbershops

Fade And A Shave: Inside Philly’s Black Barbershops

December 7, 2016  |  Last Light

Contributor Theresa Stigale documents life inside neighborhood barbershops with this photo essay > more

America's Oldest Road Takes Center Stage In New Documentary

America’s Oldest Road Takes Center Stage In New Documentary

December 5, 2016  |  Vantage

The King's Highway, the oldest continuously used road in America, is the subject of an award winning documentary premiering tonight at the Kimmel Center > more

A Moving Monument

A Moving Monument

December 5, 2016  |  News

Nearly four years after Hidden City proposed relocating the forlorn Newkirk Viaduct Monument from the side of the train tracks to the forthcoming Bartram's Mile segment of the Schuylkill River Trail system... that has happened. Brad Maule has the story of the 177-year-old monument's relocation > more

Inside SEPTA's Unused Underground Concourse, To Be Restored

Inside SEPTA’s Unused Underground Concourse, To Be Restored

December 2, 2016  |  Last Light

The Center City Concourse, a network of underground pedestrian walkways, has sat empty and largely unused for decades. But big plans are in the works to reopen and reanimate the dead space. Samantha Smyth and Chandra Lampreich takes us into the abandoned tunnels with this photo essay > more

Location Is Everything: Confessions Of A PhillyHistory User

Location Is Everything: Confessions Of A PhillyHistory User

November 30, 2016  |  Vantage

Volunteer PhillyHistory.org geotagger Louis Lescas is an urban historian, map wiz, and human GPS system all wrapped up in one. In this personal essay he shares his love and obsession with hunting locations of old photos for the Philadelphia City Archive > more