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VIDEO: Artist Paints New MLK Mural In Historic Dunbar District

Carla Eckels

A new mural with an image of civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. has been spray painted on a building in Wichita's historic Dunbar District.

Daniel Guatimea says he knew his work on the mural, located at 9th & Cleveland, would resonate with the community. He is one of the artists working with Horizontes, a community engagement art project that focuses on solidarity between Wichita’s North End and northeast neighborhoods.

Guatimea used an image of Dr. King from his phone and six cans of spray paint to create the mural.

"I like the expressions on people’s faces when they see it," Guatimea says. "I like making people happy, especially something like this as somebody they could relate to."

Initially, spray painting was an escape from the fast life of his California neighborhood. But as he's grown older, 26-year-old Guatimea says he realizes how his art can bring people together.

"I’m sure growing up, somebody always tells you, 'quit writing on the walls at home,'" he says. "I was just one of the kids that never listened. I just got older and kept doing it."

Guatimea says his spray paint art is something he's always enjoyed doing since he was a kid.

"It's one of the things that makes me happy and other people happy," he says. "That's important to me."

Carla Eckels is director of cultural diversity and the host of Soulsations. Follow her on Twitter @Eckels. To contact KMUW News or to send in a news tip, reach us at news@kmuw.org.

Carla Eckels is Director of Organizational Culture at KMUW. She produces and hosts the R&B and gospel show Soulsations and brings stories of race and culture to The Range with the monthly segment In the Mix. Carla was inducted into The Kansas African American Museum's Trailblazers Hall of Fame in 2020 for her work in broadcast/journalism.