The Family Interrupted project, which explores the impact of incarceration on Philadelphia families, includes many overlapping visual layers. Stained glass is a major element weaving its way throughout the complex narrative of the mural.  Photo: Mike Reali
       
     
 The wall sits adjacent to King Solomon Baptist Church, I felt it was important to integrate the Church's windows into the design as a way to compliment the space. The connected colors of the individual stained glass pieces create its own world within the mural.  Photo: Mike Reali
       
     
 Strength is one topic that recurred throughout all of our discussions. In most cases, many  ex offenders felt that their family's strength was the driving force in dark times. The families had to stay strong, in spite of the situation. This had to be acknowledged.  Photo: Mike Reali
       
     
 The first two windows of the "Family" wall feature a large stained glass Oak Tree, symbolic  of that Strength. Each window is roughly 100sq ft of glass. 
       
     
 The background contains a mirrored pattern that changes according to the time of day. When the sun hits the wall, the mirror is very dark creating a separation.  Photo: Mike Reali
       
     
 In the afternoon, when the sun is behind the wall, the mirror illuminates, leading the eye through all of the connected glass pieces. 
       
     
 Window Detail  Photo: Mike Reali
       
     
 Window Detail  Photo: Mike Reali
       
     
 Window Detail  Photo: Mike Reali
       
     
 Window Detail  Photo: Mike Reali
       
     
 The figure silhouettes carry the colors and line work which originate in the church windows. Each figure interrupts a painted portrait on the mural, the glass figures appear as their missing piece. 
       
     
 The colors of the silhouettes break out into the painting of the middle walls. Here, the glass figures are reversed; they are composed mostly of colored mirror, accented with stained glass lines.  Photo: Mike Reali
       
     
 These figures are the viewer's entry point into the piece, both literally and figuratively. These silhouettes look like everyday people on the street.  Photo: Mike Reali
       
     
 These center walls depict visiting room life, and its fragmented moments of family interaction. These scenes are interspersed among vignettes of the media, government, and general public opinion which can serve to further complicate that limited interaction. Photo: Mike Reali
       
     
 Reflecting Figure Detail Photo:Mike Reali
       
     
 "Incarcerated" Wall detail Photo: Mike Reali
       
     
 "Incarcerated" Wall detail Photo: Mike Reali
       
     
 The final stained glass window appears next to the church itself. The incarcerated wall is comprised of symbolic of dilapidation, and the passage of time. The windows are shattered, exposing clock gears underneath.  Photo: Eric Okdeh
       
     
 The window features a recreation of Esteban Murillo's "Prodigal Son" painting, made entirely out of stained glass and colored mirror.  Photo: Mike Reali
       
     
 Detail of the Family window in studio
       
     
 Timelapse still of the glass in studio
       
     
 Timelapse still of the glass in studio
       
     
 The windows had to be assembled indoors so we could review the overall piece. Visit the video section of this website, to see the time lapse of these windows being fabricated. 
       
     
 Studio Detail
       
     
 My assistant Diana, laying out the mirrored pieces, plotting the areas that need to be cut out for the glass lines. 
       
     
 Our finished, grouted figures drying out. 
       
     
 Assembling the portraits was very time consuming. I had to be more selective of the individual pieces I used. I estimated that I went from finishing 10-12 sq ft a day to just 1 sq ft a day when it came to this window. 
       
     
 Portrait detail
       
     
 The fragments, assembled on the studio floor.
       
     
 We began glass installation during April 2012. Some of the larger figures required strips of mirror to cover the seams. 
       
     
 Tree Detail, before the grout
       
     
 Installation Detail
       
     
 The finished windows. 
       
     
 Portrait Detail
       
     
 Reflection. Click  here  to visit my project website, and visit the murals section of this website to learn more about Family Interrupted. 
       
     
 The Family Interrupted project, which explores the impact of incarceration on Philadelphia families, includes many overlapping visual layers. Stained glass is a major element weaving its way throughout the complex narrative of the mural.  Photo: Mike Reali
       
     

The Family Interrupted project, which explores the impact of incarceration on Philadelphia families, includes many overlapping visual layers. Stained glass is a major element weaving its way throughout the complex narrative of the mural. 
Photo: Mike Reali

 The wall sits adjacent to King Solomon Baptist Church, I felt it was important to integrate the Church's windows into the design as a way to compliment the space. The connected colors of the individual stained glass pieces create its own world within the mural.  Photo: Mike Reali
       
     

The wall sits adjacent to King Solomon Baptist Church, I felt it was important to integrate the Church's windows into the design as a way to compliment the space. The connected colors of the individual stained glass pieces create its own world within the mural. 
Photo: Mike Reali

 Strength is one topic that recurred throughout all of our discussions. In most cases, many  ex offenders felt that their family's strength was the driving force in dark times. The families had to stay strong, in spite of the situation. This had to be acknowledged.  Photo: Mike Reali
       
     

Strength is one topic that recurred throughout all of our discussions. In most cases, many  ex offenders felt that their family's strength was the driving force in dark times. The families had to stay strong, in spite of the situation. This had to be acknowledged. 
Photo: Mike Reali

 The first two windows of the "Family" wall feature a large stained glass Oak Tree, symbolic  of that Strength. Each window is roughly 100sq ft of glass. 
       
     

The first two windows of the "Family" wall feature a large stained glass Oak Tree, symbolic  of that Strength. Each window is roughly 100sq ft of glass. 

 The background contains a mirrored pattern that changes according to the time of day. When the sun hits the wall, the mirror is very dark creating a separation.  Photo: Mike Reali
       
     

The background contains a mirrored pattern that changes according to the time of day. When the sun hits the wall, the mirror is very dark creating a separation. 
Photo: Mike Reali

 In the afternoon, when the sun is behind the wall, the mirror illuminates, leading the eye through all of the connected glass pieces. 
       
     

In the afternoon, when the sun is behind the wall, the mirror illuminates, leading the eye through all of the connected glass pieces. 

 Window Detail  Photo: Mike Reali
       
     

Window Detail
Photo: Mike Reali

 Window Detail  Photo: Mike Reali
       
     

Window Detail
Photo: Mike Reali

 Window Detail  Photo: Mike Reali
       
     

Window Detail
Photo: Mike Reali

 Window Detail  Photo: Mike Reali
       
     

Window Detail
Photo: Mike Reali

 The figure silhouettes carry the colors and line work which originate in the church windows. Each figure interrupts a painted portrait on the mural, the glass figures appear as their missing piece. 
       
     

The figure silhouettes carry the colors and line work which originate in the church windows. Each figure interrupts a painted portrait on the mural, the glass figures appear as their missing piece. 

 The colors of the silhouettes break out into the painting of the middle walls. Here, the glass figures are reversed; they are composed mostly of colored mirror, accented with stained glass lines.  Photo: Mike Reali
       
     

The colors of the silhouettes break out into the painting of the middle walls. Here, the glass figures are reversed; they are composed mostly of colored mirror, accented with stained glass lines. 
Photo: Mike Reali

 These figures are the viewer's entry point into the piece, both literally and figuratively. These silhouettes look like everyday people on the street.  Photo: Mike Reali
       
     

These figures are the viewer's entry point into the piece, both literally and figuratively. These silhouettes look like everyday people on the street. 
Photo: Mike Reali

 These center walls depict visiting room life, and its fragmented moments of family interaction. These scenes are interspersed among vignettes of the media, government, and general public opinion which can serve to further complicate that limited interaction. Photo: Mike Reali
       
     

These center walls depict visiting room life, and its fragmented moments of family interaction. These scenes are interspersed among vignettes of the media, government, and general public opinion which can serve to further complicate that limited interaction.
Photo: Mike Reali

 Reflecting Figure Detail Photo:Mike Reali
       
     

Reflecting Figure Detail
Photo:Mike Reali

 "Incarcerated" Wall detail Photo: Mike Reali
       
     

"Incarcerated" Wall detail
Photo: Mike Reali

 "Incarcerated" Wall detail Photo: Mike Reali
       
     

"Incarcerated" Wall detail
Photo: Mike Reali

 The final stained glass window appears next to the church itself. The incarcerated wall is comprised of symbolic of dilapidation, and the passage of time. The windows are shattered, exposing clock gears underneath.  Photo: Eric Okdeh
       
     

The final stained glass window appears next to the church itself. The incarcerated wall is comprised of symbolic of dilapidation, and the passage of time. The windows are shattered, exposing clock gears underneath. 
Photo: Eric Okdeh

 The window features a recreation of Esteban Murillo's "Prodigal Son" painting, made entirely out of stained glass and colored mirror.  Photo: Mike Reali
       
     

The window features a recreation of Esteban Murillo's "Prodigal Son" painting, made entirely out of stained glass and colored mirror. 
Photo: Mike Reali

 Detail of the Family window in studio
       
     

Detail of the Family window in studio

 Timelapse still of the glass in studio
       
     

Timelapse still of the glass in studio

 Timelapse still of the glass in studio
       
     

Timelapse still of the glass in studio

 The windows had to be assembled indoors so we could review the overall piece. Visit the video section of this website, to see the time lapse of these windows being fabricated. 
       
     

The windows had to be assembled indoors so we could review the overall piece. Visit the video section of this website, to see the time lapse of these windows being fabricated. 

 Studio Detail
       
     

Studio Detail

 My assistant Diana, laying out the mirrored pieces, plotting the areas that need to be cut out for the glass lines. 
       
     

My assistant Diana, laying out the mirrored pieces, plotting the areas that need to be cut out for the glass lines. 

 Our finished, grouted figures drying out. 
       
     

Our finished, grouted figures drying out. 

 Assembling the portraits was very time consuming. I had to be more selective of the individual pieces I used. I estimated that I went from finishing 10-12 sq ft a day to just 1 sq ft a day when it came to this window. 
       
     

Assembling the portraits was very time consuming. I had to be more selective of the individual pieces I used. I estimated that I went from finishing 10-12 sq ft a day to just 1 sq ft a day when it came to this window. 

 Portrait detail
       
     

Portrait detail

 The fragments, assembled on the studio floor.
       
     

The fragments, assembled on the studio floor.

 We began glass installation during April 2012. Some of the larger figures required strips of mirror to cover the seams. 
       
     

We began glass installation during April 2012. Some of the larger figures required strips of mirror to cover the seams. 

 Tree Detail, before the grout
       
     

Tree Detail, before the grout

 Installation Detail
       
     

Installation Detail

 The finished windows. 
       
     

The finished windows. 

 Portrait Detail
       
     

Portrait Detail

 Reflection. Click  here  to visit my project website, and visit the murals section of this website to learn more about Family Interrupted. 
       
     

Reflection. Click here to visit my project website, and visit the murals section of this website to learn more about Family Interrupted.