Artsmash Critic Tim Smith covers classical music, theater and visual arts in Baltimore and beyond

An oversized mural of acclaimed Baltimore artist Amy Sherald's work will be installed at the Parkway Theatre

Now you won’t have to go to a museum to see a painting by acclaimed Baltimore artist Amy Sherald.

The Baltimore Office of Promotion & the Arts announced Friday that an oversized mural of Sherald’s painting “Equilibrium” will be installed on the wall of the Parkway Theatre located at the geographic center of the city.

“Equilibrium” shows a woman balancing a pole on her shoulders while dangling a heart on a chain from one hand. The woman is depicted with Sherald’s trademark gray skin tone and is silhouetted against a vibrant red and orange striped background.

According to the arts office, the original oil painting that the mural will be based on is in the permanent collection* of the Embassy of the United States in Dakar, Senegal. The mural will be dedicated Aug. 21 and is funded through the Transformative Art Prize grant that installs public artworks in underused public places.

The painting may remind viewers of Sherald’s best-known work, a portrait of former first lady Michelle Obama that was unveiled in February and hangs in Washington’s National Portrait Gallery. Both paintings show off their subject’s strong, toned arms, and both women are wearing floor-length white skirts with a pattern that evokes the quilts created by African-American women in Gee’s Bend, Ala.

Both artworks pay homage to the strength and resilience of African-American women.

mmccauley@baltsun.com

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*A previous version of this story mischaracterized the collection of which the original oil painting is a part. The painting is part of the U.S. Embassy in Senegal’s permanent collection. The Sun regrets the error.
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