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“Peace, Water, & Solidarity” Community Mural and Interview with Jules Badoni

Friday, April 19th, 2013

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Photos by Jules Badoni & Diane Ovalle

Jules Badoni graduated from Arizona State University a few years ago with a degree in American Indian Studies. Since then, he’s dedicated himself to his art, which is inspired by his culture and heritage.

ai???I’m Dine’ (Navajo), from the Coyote Past clan. I’m from TahChee, which is located on the Navajo Nation in Northern, AZ,ai??? he explains.

Badoni knew that he wanted to start painting murals after graduation. The first mural he painted while attending ASU took him nearly two years to complete, so he also wanted to find a collective of artists to participate and help with the process. Around this time, he enrolled in Navajo artist Steve Yazzie’s painting class at Phoenix College, which is where he met fellow classmate Edgar Fernandez.

ai???Edgar identifies with his Mayan heritage . . . [he] looks up to artists like the muralistas mexicanos Diego Rivera, Siqueiros, and Orozco, as well as Frida Kahlo. Personally, I like Diego Rivera’s art, but not the artist, while I like the artist Frida Kahlo, but not the art,ai??? Badoni says.

Both artists shared a desire to represent their heritage while getting their work out into the open, so when Badoni found a wall whose landlord was willing to let them paint, he approached Fernandez and the project was born.

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