Painter Eyes Cambridge Canning Industry for Mural - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Painter Eyes Cambridge Canning Industry for Mural

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Cambridge citizens gathered Wednesday night to share stories and give ideas to artist Michael Owen. (Photo:WBOC) Cambridge citizens gathered Wednesday night to share stories and give ideas to artist Michael Owen. (Photo:WBOC)

CAMBRIDGE, Md.- In Dorchester County several murals have appeared over the past few years, painted by local artist Michael Rosato.  The fifth mural in the six part series is in the works.  A new painter is trying his hand, with some help from the community.

You've probably seen at least one of the murals as you come into Cambridge on Maryland Avenue.  It's one of several scattered around the county.

"The idea around putting them up is to honor our heritage around the county from different points of view and different periods of time, and to help make that a piece of the public landscape," said Katie Clendaniel with the Heart of the Chesapeake Heritage Area.

On Wednesday night, members of the Cambridge community gathered at Liv Again to meet Michael Owen, an artist based in Baltimore.  He will be painting the fifth mural in the series, and was hoping to draw inspiration from the group.

"If I come down here and paint whatever I see and feel, it can only be that powerful," Owen said. "If we get more people together, the work can be more powerful.  It's just an effort to make the work matter."

Owen is known as the artist behind the Baltimore love movement.  To learn more about the impact the canning industry had on the area, he spoke with people who remember those days.  Some mentioned how when the industry left, the heart of the town went with it.

"How do you bring that back?  Is that just the way it's going to be?  You just really think about what the future might hold and put that on people's mind.  You put in their mind that there could be a future here, things could be different, things could be as vibrant as they were before, or even more so in a different way?  That's powerful when you plant that in somebody's mind," said Owen.

Powerful thoughts that will be planted in visitors' minds.

"People are coming to see and experience the truth, and that's what murals do.  They project the story and you develop the true meaning behind it," said Jermaine Anderson, owner of Liv Again.

The ideal home for this mural on canning is at Factory F, one of the last remnants of the Phillips Packing Plant.

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