The Story Behind Mission District’s Carnaval Mural, San Francisco

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carnaval mural mission district san francisco

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SAN FRANCISCO | The Mission District’s Carnaval mural was created in 1983 by muralist Daniel Galvez and local artists Dan Fontes, Keith Sklar, Jaime Morgan, Eduardo Pineda and Jan Sheild. The seeds of its creation were sown when Mauricio Avilés, a committee member of the Mission District’s annual Carnaval celebration, asked photographer Lou Dematteis if he could use a selection of his photos of the inaugural Carnival celebration in 1979 to create the mural.

Also known as “Golden Dreams of the Mission”, the Carnaval mural is an excellent example of mural realism. Galvez, a photo realist painter, wanted each paint stroke to be visible from across the street, and used visual tricks to incorporate the mural into the building’s architecture. In fact, many people assume that the building itself is a Victorian era building as the paintwork is so detailed.

The Carnaval mural was restored in 2014 and is an important part of the mission’s history and the local Latin culture.

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