Dan Vlahos

Community Alliance of Mission Hill

Neighborhood Celebration Poster, 2009

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To promote the first ever Mission Hill Neighborhood Celebration I was invited to create promotional materials including silkscreen posters, tee shirts, email banners and fliers. I also created a Mission Hill "MH" monogram that's been used for subsequent community events including a "Harmony on the Hill" concert and fundraiser for local youth scholarships.

The bold, sans-serif typography and the monogram itself play off vertical alignments of characters, giving the poster a feeling of "unity." The spacing (or "kerning") between the letters of the last word (together) is reduced down, with the characters nestled together ever so slightly. The posters were silkscreened printed by Lucky Bunny Visual Communications, the brainchild of the very talented Los Angeles-based artist and designer, Rich DeSimone.

In the latter half of the 20th century Mission Hill was seen as one of the most dangerous areas of Boston. By the early 1970s most white people and affluent black people had moved away. With property values low, many of the homes were bought by slumlords and converted into rental housing. The inexpensive rents brought many students from nearby colleges and universities such as MassArt, which first drew me to the neighborhood in 1998.

Mission Hill is now one of the most diverse neighborhoods in the city and is experiencing a renaissance of sorts with some of the most sustainable and socially innovative residential architecture in the country in development with firms such as Sebastian Mariscal Studio contributing.

The event was made possible through the generous support of local businesses, community groups and a seed grant from the Mission Hill/Fenway Neighborhood Trust.

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Mission Hill Celebration Poster