White wall with large red and pink faces and signs and offerings below

2020 Ruby Chacón Award Announced

It is our incredible honor to announce that, for the year 2020, MICA recognizes the SLC MURAL MAKERS as the recipients of the Ruby Chacón Social Justice Arts Award.
 
The Ruby Chacón Social Justice Arts Award is given annually to individuals who are advancing justice and equity in our communities through the arts. It is named after MICA co-founder Ruby Chacón, a Xicana artist, educator, activist, and community leader whose murals and other artwork can be seen across the Valley.
 
Our 2020 award goes to the SLC Mural Makers, the anonymous artist collective whose portraits of individuals killed by police can be found on the corner of 800 S and 300 W in Salt Lake City. They, in turn, used the prize money to support the work of local mother and organizer Rae Duckworth, surviving family member of one of those honored in the murals.

Background

Not long after the news of the murder of George Floyd at the hands of the Minneapolis Police Department shocked the country, the SLC Mural Makers honored the life of Floyd by painting a beautiful mural on the exterior walls of the Fleet Building, on the corner of 800 South and 300 West. Soon thereafter, many other portraits began to appear next to that of George Floyd: these portraits honor, celebrate, and uplift the lives of just a few of the countless victims of police brutality here in Utah, and across the country. This collection of murals has become a place where our communities come together to mourn, celebrate, and reflect.

Through the art of the SLC Mural Makers, our community can honor our fallen while bringing awareness to the violence that our communities have experienced through systemic racism carried out at the hands of Utah’s police forces. The collection of portraits on the walls of the Fleet Building is now an iconic and essential part of Salt Lake City’s west side, and community members are fighting to protect it. MICA is proud to honor the SLC Mural Makers with the 2020 Ruby Chacón Social Justice Arts award because these works of art serve as a reminder that, without true justice, there can be no peace.