Internationally-acclaimed visual artist Faith XLVII recently completed her largest mural to date. Standing 11.000 square feet tall, this piece – titled ‘The Silent Watcher’, pays tribute to Noam Chomsky, and calls out for brotherly love. It has become a visual landmark and gateway from University City to West Philadelphia.
In the words of Faith XLVII:
“I come from a country that is seething with the frustration of uncontrollable violence and woman abuse, xenophobia, class and racial divide. And have moved to a country where there seems to be a fundamental crisis in the very soul of the nation. We know this ache of our lands. And we all know personal ache. Everybody has their struggle to bear.
And with the weight of the world on our shoulders, we must still be able to live with empathy. We must somehow keep our hearts open. The words on this wall are a reference to the City Seal of Philadelphia with calls out for brotherly love. This is no small commitment.
It also references a quote ‘Optimism is a strategy for a Better Future.’ Paying tribute to Noam Chomsky who was born in Philadelphia and is 91 years old this year.
The harsh experiences of life can easily make us fall into a negative world view, or inner psychological depression. But we each have the ability to transform this base metal of knowing suffering, into the gold of higher aspiration.
The name of this mural is ‘The Silent Watcher’. We can be the silent watcher, who knows, who loves and who endures.”
Faith XLVII, who is currently based in Los Angeles, creates work that attempts to disarm the strategies of global realpolitik, in order to advance the expression of personal truth. In this way, her work is both an internal and spiritual release that speaks to the complexities of the human condition, its deviant histories, and existential search.
Channeling the international destinations that have been imprinted on her after two decades of interacting with urban environments as one of the most renowned and prolific muralists, she continues to examine our place in the world.
Using a wide range of media intended for gallery settings, Faith’s explorative and substrate approach involves discovered and recovered objects, shrine construction, painting, projection mapping, video installation, printmaking, and drawings. The seeds for Faith’s works begin with a raw intimacy.
Her pictorial exploration of the duality of human relations carries the deep importance of our interconnectedness. While certain people see a dilapidated building as proof that the world is purging itself of the unwanted, Faith is reclaiming these forgotten elements with a sensuality of her own and presenting them with a virtuoso’s skill-set.
Faith’s work can be viewed here.