Our Library, Our Mural
Welcome to the official homepage of our community gift to the City of Brisbane and our library. This piece was commissioned through the generous donations of our citizens, businesses, organizations, and friends from 2017-2020. Situated in the courtyard of the new library at 163 Visitacion Ave., this bright and welcoming acrylic mural with mosaic has a little bit of everything and everyone from the beginning of Brisbane and beyond. Can you recognize a few things? Below you will find our collection of narratives, photos, and stories of how this wonderful piece came to be. Enjoy!
Below: Early rendition in colored pencil on poster
Nested Together, We Flourish!
A Narrative by Precita Eyes Muralists, Directed by Susan Cervantes with Lead Artist Julia Barzizza
September 3, 2020
A large book opens to a page depicting the Ohlone people. The book represents the history of Brisbane and its everlasting stories. Binary code spills from the pages, representing the present and future. It spells the city’s date of incorporation: November 27, 1961.
A pair of kids sit at the edge of the book; one reads and the other holds books in his lap while gazing upward at the native birds. A Red-tailed Hawk, a Swift, and parrots carry the pages of Brisbane Library’s history beyond the nest and into the world! The pages are scribed with dates important to the library’s history: the date the library opened, the date it was moved to the community drug store, the year the library grew into the largest location of its own, the year the community center and library were combined and commemorated, and the present date when the library opens new doors to another chapter!
Native plantlife (Silver Lupine, California Sagebrush, Miner's Lettuce, Blue Chaparral, Poppies and Lessengia) grow around houses, and intergenerational communities gather together to create a nest around Brisbane. While some volunteer in the garden and read, others protest the construction of the quarry and the residential development on San Bruno Mountain. The construction trucks encroach onto the nested city from the right side of the mural, and the Brisbane residents gather together to protect their community. In front of the construction protests, Black Lives Matter activists raise their fists and lead the march
toward the viewer. A young man with a book bag holds a sign that reads, “My life matters.” Above the protesters is a Barn Owl and her chick, symbolizing wisdom and generations growing safely together.
Behind the owl is the baseball diamond and the Mission Blue nursery, overflowing with plantlife and greenery. The mobile library putters in the background. Music drifts from musicians playing in the gazebo on the far left, and the notes trickle above the scene while Mission Blue butterflies flit in-between.
In the background looms a vibrant and rugged San Bruno mountain. Fog rolls over one side of the mountain, carrying an Ohlone Boat, symbolic of the Ohlone ancestors who are still here today. Treetops peak in between the wisps of fog, while a fire truck patrols up the mountain. Community members run, bike, hike, walk their dogs and workout in the park.
More houses nestle together in the distance, and Brisbane residents howl at the moon! In the far distance is the emerald city (San Francisco). Night stars twinkle over houses decorated with colorful stars. In between the houses and people are decorative fire hydrants, markers of Brisbane’s unique traditions.
In the distance is the healing quarry, surrounded by viridian, wisps of wind and trails. Kids roll down one side of the mountain in colorful derby cars! They race toward the open book, toward knowledge and lifelong learning, and the roots of Brisbane’s history.
Nested together the community flourishes, radiating warmth, resilience, and community.
Check back soon for the story of how our mural was created!