A mural reveal will provide Queer representation at McKinleyville High School 

Vice President of the Diversity Club, Miriam Wheeler, painting mural.

The mural reveal for McKinleyville High School students is an effort to bring Queer inclusivity and representation.

“The mural project our club thought was important to have on campus to tell other students, other queer students, coming in here that they’re acknowledged on campus and that they’re welcome and that we see them and that there’s a space for them here,” said Finn Jackson, Diversity Club ASB Representative.

The subjects of the mural include Queer icons like Frida Kahlo, Marsha P. Johnson, Harvey Milk, Stormé DeLarverie, Claude Cahun and William Dorsey Swann.

“We wanted to make a piece of art that would showcase contributions throughout history,” said Violet Gross, President of the Diversity Club.

Non-profit organizations Art Representation Culture and Youth Art Will Succeed presented the project to McKinleyville High School last year. It’s a dream-maker project by the Ink People Center of the Arts. These organizations have been working for the past few years at different schools in our area to provide more diversity and inclusivity through art. 

“I definitely believe that there’s momentum that this county picks up,” said Anne Sahlberg, Diversity Club Advisor. “At Eureka High when they finish their murals, then Arcata High’s mural and our murals and a lot of different groups like Black Student Union, Native American Club, Diversity Club, all of these students are finding their place, if you will, or perhaps better said that they are in their place.”

Students hope that this mural and similar actions will allow queer students to feel safe, seen and heard for generations to come.

“We hope the mural will make campus feel like a more inclusive place and will bring some color to the school that we’ve been attending,” said Miriam Wheeler, Vice President of the Diversity Club. 

McKinleyville High School’s Diversity Club will reveal the mural to the public Friday evening at the high school library at 6:30 p.m. Also in attendance will be community leaders, the Foggy Bottom Boys and the mural artists. All are invited to attend.