Silvia López Chavez: Community Tides

Community Tides is a mural portraying the New Bedford’s community, the fishing industry, its diverse economy, and depiction of life at the intersection of land and water. Silvia Lopez Chavez had collaborated with New Bedford High School students to create her signature colorful patterns pulled from the student’s own photos of their local landscapes and daily lives. Utilizing acrylic paint, spray paint, and stencils to design various sizes of layered panels, New Bedford’s local youth explored STEAM technology and design innovation to help contribute to the final design of Community Tides. In partnership with Northern Pelagic Group (NORPEL), the semi-permanent mural measures 223 feet in length by 17 feet in height, serves both as the first piece of contemporary art on Fish Island and DATMA’s first semi-permanent artwork.  

Community Tides can be viewed anytime by car or sidewalk at 4 Fish Island, New Bedford, MA on the NORPEL exterior wall adjacent to a prominent New Bedford roadway along the New Bedford-Fairhaven Bridge, prominently viewable from the land, sea, and air.

DATMA thanks the many individuals, businesses, foundations, and government resources that helped us bring Community Tides to New Bedford: New Bedford Massachusetts Cultural Council, Mass Development, New Bedford Education Foundation, NORPEL, Signarama in Raynham, New Bedford Economic Development Council (NBEDC), New Bedford Creative, the Hope Foundation, and many generous individuals who gave in honor of DATMA’s Co-Founder, Roger Mandle. 

Based in Boston, Silvia Lopez Chavez is a Dominican-American artist whose community-centered murals form connections across disciplines and cultural boundaries. She uses joy as an act of resistance and celebration through her vibrant murals, and her work transforms urban spaces by honoring the identity of a place and its people. Silvia is a Neighborhood Salon Luminary at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum and was awarded the New England Foundation for the Arts (NEFA) Leadership in Public Art award (2021). Commissions include the U.S. Chinese Embassy in Beijing, Google HQ in California, SeaWalls Boston, MIT, Harvard University, Twitter, and Northeastern University. Artist residencies include Vermont Studio Center, Haystack, and Mass MoCa. She is an alumna of Altos de Chavon School of Art & Design in the Dominican Republic and Massachusetts College of Art & Design.


For media inquiries, please contact: Edwina A. Kluender, KLÜNDER Communications [email protected] & PH 1.617.888.5859. Here is our downloadable press release: DATMA SHELTER2023 Press Release Announcement Here.


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