Story and Photos by Susan Fried
Hundreds of people filled the Franklin High School commons on Nov. 9 to await the official unveiling of the Franklin High School Art of Resistance and Resilience Club’s 40-foot mural commemorating the Seattle Chapter of the Black Panther’s 50th Anniversary. Members of the Art of Resistance & Resilience, a social and environmental justice-oriented art club at Franklin, have been working on the mural since January and were able to display a portion of it at the SCBP 50th Anniversary Celebration in April.
Making the unveiling even more special was the fact that Bobby Seale, a co-founder with Huey Newton of the Black Panthers in Oakland in 1966, was on hand, along with half a dozen members of the Seattle Chapter of the Black Panthers.
People filed out of the High School to the fence along Rainier Avenue, where the mural is displayed and watched as the tarps were removed to reveal the banner that tells the history of the Seattle Black Panther Party in pictures.
The evening celebration also included a short film documenting the mural’s creation, musical performances, poetry and spoken word, Native American storytelling and a photo essay by Unapologetic Artist Creatives.
The evening ended with guest speakers Elmer Dixon, co-founder of the Seattle Black Panther Party and Bobby Seale talking briefly about the history of the Black Panthers and their contribution the the social justice movements of the sixties and today.
Featured Photo: Franklin students pull the tarp off a 40-foot mural created by the Franklin High School Art of Resistance & Resilience Club in honor of the 50th Anniversary of the forming of the Seattle Chapter of the Black Panther Party. (Photo: Susan Fried)