Mexican muralist Jose Andres from Humboldt Park was hired by owner Carnicerias Jimenaz to paint the outside walls of North Pulaski Fresh Market, also known to local residents as “Bedolla” (3850 W. North Ave.), as a “present to the Puerto Rican community.”
“All the murals I’ve created are inside; this is the very first I have painted outside. The main thing is the cold weather. Inside, you are comfortable; outside, you are exposed to everything from rain to… you name it,” said Andres.
Andres has been working for a month now on the mural, which includes PR symbols like el Morro (a tower they used to watch the open sea in order to prevent pirates from entering the island), the Coqui and a traditional flower, as well as others like the baseball player Roberto Clemente.
“I want people to be content as this is like a reminder for them,” said Andres in regards to his mural. “I like realism. I don’t like the abstract. I’ve said many times that all of us have talent but people get discouraged at the first mistake.”
“The owner told me to redo the entire wall, so I was trying to get rid of the old mural but someone stopped me by saying that it was historic. I think 100 people painted that mural. All their names are there,” said Andres.
Andres used to be a factory worker before he discovered his passion and love for painting. He has been painting murals throughout Chicago for five years now, painting more than 200 murals.
“I love working alone. For me, it’s a hobby that I love. Time goes by fast. My wife told me, “If you are able to paint, why did you go to work in a factory?”
This post is also available in: Spanish