Contribute to history, culture, and art in Ybor City. We need additional resources to improve the mural with lighting and a viewing kiosk, as well as support other public art projects that enhance the historic district.
More About the Project
An American Journey
The Legacy of Ybor City and Tampa
The public/private Ybor City mural project was designed and produced under the artistic
direction of muralist Michael Parker, supported by community volunteers and art
students from Hillsborough Community College Ybor Campus. The mural covers 12,000
square feet of surface area, the largest outdoor original artwork in the state of
The design incorporates three integrating themes and six individual messages reflecting
the experience of the Ybor National Historic Landmark District, past and present.
The integrating themes are:
The Journey through Life
At the far left, an immigrant family stands at the beginning of their American journey.
An uncertain starting point of great hope and great risk. As the viewer scans from
left to right, the scenes accelerate in tempo and complexity, as does life, to a
critical point at the center where past and present pressures and destinies merge.
Continuing right of the center point carries the viewer through a reflective phase
and ultimately to the peace and security of home and family.
The Conflict between Tradition and Progress
Many of the people depicted in the mural faced hard choices between clinging to
the past or reaching for tomorrow. The internal conflicts include the tension between
Spanish and Cuban citizens during the Cuban Revolution, the struggle for equality
among the black population, the changing role of women, the class conflict between
management and working class and the desire to stay near home while at the same
time hungering for new experience and opportunity.
The American Experience
Throughout this mural shine the values of our nation – a place people from many
nations came to enjoy freedom – a place people from many nations came to find economic
opportunity – and a place people from many nations came to secure hope for future
generations. There is no better example of successful assimilation of vastly different
cultures within the United States. This is a legacy to treasure.
Click here to read more and discover the stories behind the artwork of this mural!
The mural is a public-private effort that has been in the planning stage for the last two years. In addition to the City of Tampa and Ybor City Development Corporation, the project has been supported by local businesses, including the Columbia Restaurant Group, Ybor City Rotary Club, Kimmins Construction Corp., Vykin Corp., Actsoft Corp., Hoffman Porges Gallery, Fabricated Products, Ybor City Round Table, Protective Coating Solutions, Inc., SAFWAY Scaffolding and Acccess Solutions, Corrosion Specialties, Inc., Sherwin Willliams Company, Ring Power/The CAT Rental Store, Glendale Painting Corp., Empire Paint, Brandon School of Dance Arts, Salem Enterprise Solutions, Radiant Oil, Bad Monkey Ybor, Special Forces Motorcycle Club, Cars Plus, Rolling Thunder Motorcycle Club, and La Gaceta.