The Western Illinois Museum invites the public to help create a Broadside Mural on three Saturdays beginning on April 13th. Other dates include Saturday, July 13th and Saturday, August 10th, and work sessions will be held from 9:00 am to noon. Museum staff and volunteers will be on-hand to assist those wishing to help; no experience is necessary. Children ten and up who are accompanied by an adult are welcome.
The mural project will use a traditional wheat paste method of posting what were known as Broadsides. Historically broadsides were used as posters, announcing events, making proclamations and commentaries, or simple advertisements. John Dunlap of Philadelphia is credited for posting a broadside of the United States Declaration of Independence in 1776. For the museum’s mural project, local advertisements from Xerox copies of early newspapers will provide compelling graphics for the mural. The public is invited to create a collage from the Xerox copies of the advertisements and attach them with wheat paste to a wood panel. The panels will be mounted on the museum’s east side garage door.
The Broadside mural project is a return to the more immediate form of expression, taking its cue from our rebellious and resourceful ancestors who made declarations on the walls of buildings for all to see. These wheat paste posters, announcements, and declarations were an important vehicle to spread ideas and rally support for the cause. The museum’s broadside mural project provides a tangible way for people to once again come together to express their ideas, dreams, and foster conversation.
Some materials being used to create the broadsides are permanent; participants are encouraged to wear clothing they don’t mind getting the wheat paste glue on.
The Western Illinois Museum is located at 201 South Lafayette Street, one block south of Macomb’s Courthouse Square. For more information contact the museum at firstname.lastname@example.org or (309) 837.2750.