It’s hard to miss in downtown Sacramento: a giant red, orange and yellow likeness of Johnny Cash performing at Folsom State Prison.
The new mural is famed graphic artist and activist Shepard Fairey’s contribution to this year’s Wide Open Walls festival, which started Aug. 9 and ended on Sunday. The 15-story mural is on the L Street side of the Residence Inn by Marriott, with Cash’s gaze pointing toward the Folsom institution, site of one of his most famous performances.
The art is based on a photo by Jim Marshall Photography LLC.
Read more at The Sacramento Bee.
If you've been following updates this week, you know that I'm in #Sacramento for @WideOpenWalls. The crew and I just completed my 15-story #JohnnyCash at #FolsomPrison mural, which is my largest in the state of #California and my most technically ambitious mural ever. The art is based on a photo by @JimMarshallPhoto which I used originally as part of my #AmericanCivics series. I’m grateful to be able to create this image on such a large scale as a tribute for the 50th anniversary of Cash’s Live at Folsom Prison album, and I hope that this art will ignite a conversation around the need for incarceration reform. According to a recent in-depth study by the Prison Policy Initiative, America has the highest incarceration rate in the world with a shocking 2.3 million people currently imprisoned. On top of that, our prisons are disproportionately filled with poor people of color, in fact, African Americans are 13% of the U.S. population, yet 40% of the prison population in this country. More African American men are under correctional control today than there were slaves in the 1850s according to a Huffington Post piece by writer and civil rights advocate Michelle Alexander. A portion of proceeds from the Johnny Cash print I made, currently available through @ToyRoomGallery, will benefit @Cut50. Thank you to @WideOpenWalls, @BrandedArts, and my crew of assistants, Dan Flores, Nic Bowers, Rob Zagula, and Luka Densmore for the 11-hour days we worked this week in the intense heat to get this mural finished! 📷 by @jonathanfurlong