Announcing the Continuation of The Great Wall Monument

February 9, 2021 – Today The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation announced five new projects to be funded through its monuments initiative. Launched in October 2020, the Monuments Project is the Foundation’s groundbreaking grantmaking effort to reimagine and transform commemorative spaces to celebrate America’s diverse history. “Monuments and memorials powerfully shape our understanding of our country’s past, and determine which narratives we honor and celebrate in the American story,” said Elizabeth Alexander, President of the Mellon Foundation.

The Social and Public Art Resource Center (SPARC) is a proud recipient of a three-year grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to support the preservation, activation, and expansion of The Great Wall of Los Angeles Monument. 

The Great Wall of Los Angeles Monument is recognized as one of the country’s largest monuments to interracial harmony. The Great Wall was designed by muralist and SPARC Co-Founder Judy Baca and painted by artists, community members, and over 400 youth between 1976 and 1983. The grant will provide $5 million over three years to activate the mural site and begin the extension of the mural to one mile, continuing the historical narrative to include the 1960s-2020. The grant will advance work on The Great Wall, supporting community engagement and the development of digital techniques and resources for future artists.

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The Great Wall Monument 


SPARC is proud to announce that in 2021 we will launch the extension and enhancement of The Great Wall of Los Angeles mural. This program is generously supported by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Monuments Project 

Enhancements to The Great Wall Monument site will include:


The expansion of The Great Wall mural, one of the country’s largest monuments to interracial harmony, to one mile that includes histories from the 1960s to 2020. 


The building of an Interpretive Green Bridge that will serve as an instructional and ideal viewing platform, replacing the Valley College Bridge which became inaccessible to the public and never replaced following the Northridge Earthquake in 1994. 


Six interpretive stations that will provide a narrative for understanding imagery of The Great Wall, the historical context, and environmental degradation that the Los Angeles River has endured.  


Lighting for the entire half mile of mural that will not only provide illumination to The Great Wall at night but increase overall safety to nighttime park users.