One of the beautiful aspects of the pandemic has been seeing people’s creativity come out. In finding solutions and new ways to do things. Creativity in art and using our personal abilities to help others get through in so many small ways.
Community Living Campaign has continued beautifying neighborhoods while keeping everyone involved safe and healthy. One of those projects has been brightening up the stairway in Cayuga that extends Naglee Street.
Many neighbors have, over time, painted fun designs on the risers and most recently installed mosaics.
“During shelter in place, working on the stairway mosaic has been a bright light during dark times and an emblem of our resilience,” said Chris Dillon, a longtime neighborhood resident and president of the Cayuga Improvement Association.
It’s been quite the transformation from an unsightly, unsafe-feeling stairway , said Patti Spaniak, our Community Connector for the neighborhood. Older adults avoided using it even though it’s a great shortcut to Pacific Super.
Working closely with the Cayuga Improvement Association, we secured grants from Excelsior Collaborative Community Grants to paint a few murals. We got local seniors’ input on all the themes and installations. We scheduled community cleaning, hand-rail painting and weeding projects, often with the help of San Francisco Public Works. The Supervisor’s office also supported the project.
Seniors also painted the 30-stair risers, including some with scenes from Sponge Bob and Nemo that children like to try to find.
More recently, the artist of the Kenney Alley project nearby, Kim Jensen, completed the mosaic project. The designs also reflect Demi Braceros, the artist who carved many statues in Cayuga Playground.
What’s more, other similar neighborhood art projects are being considered.