A new building mural announcing the Little Saigon District on El Cajon Boulevard is the beginning on a major public arts project that will involve 10 to 20 new pieces over the next year.
The Little Saigon Project, financed by an grant from the California Arts Council, will fund murals, sculptures, light boxes and other works created by local artists and located in storefronts, cross walks, building walls and other public spaces.
The project is a collaboration by the San Diego Art Institute, Media Arts Center, Aja Project, El Cajon Boulevard Business Improvement Association and Little Saigon Foundation.
“We are really excited to be involved with this project that aligns perfectly with the San Diego Art Institute’s mission to provide local artists more opportunities to experiment with their work,” said Jacqueline Silverman, executive director. “The grant we received to participate in this project will really help to highlight the vibrant Vietnamese culture in San Diego.”
The Little Saigon district stretches along El Cajon Boulevard from Highland Avenue to Euclid Avenue in east San Diego. The mural, unveiled earlier this month, is located near the center, at Menlo Avenue. The artist is Victor Ving.
The district is the central hub in San Diego for the Vietnamese community, which was founded by refugees who came to Camp Pendleton after the Vietnam War. Some 70 percent of the businesses in Little Saigon are owned by Vietnamese-Americans.
“The Little Saigon District is an important cultural asset that highlights one of the many refugee communities that have settled here San Diego,” said Beryl Forman, marketing and mobility coordinator with the El Cajon Boulevard Business Improvement Association. “We are honoring the contemporary history of the Vietnamese community, celebrating their contribution and touting what makes San Diego a welcoming, diverse city.”
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