Near the center of Encanto, along Imperial Avenue, colorful panels celebrating the culture, history and life of this diverse community have decorated lamp posts along the street’s median for almost 30 years. I took photos of seven panels during a recent walk near the Encanto trolley station.
Twenty four panels, by local artist Eddie L. Edwards, many of which appear to be dated 1992, were part of the “Streetscape Art Project” along Imperial Avenue, which was completed in 1993. The intention was to revitalize Encanto’s modest commercial center, from 62nd Street to 69th Street. As you might imagine, the panels, exposed to almost three decades of sun and weather, have cracked and faded. But to eyes that pause and look up they remain alive, and tell the story of a hilly urban community that still feels rural even as San Diego has grown.
I’ve radically altered the brightness and contrast of these photos to help revive the color of the old panels.
(During my walk I also photographed lots of great street art. I’ll share those photos in a bit.)
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