New Urban Arts Fund Mural - Four Harmonious Friends - at Denver Public Library Hampden Branch
On April 9, 2022 Mayor Michael B. Hancock, Denver Arts & Venues, Denver Public Library, Councilwoman Kendra Black, and artist Tsogo Mijid presented "Four Harmonious Friends," a new Urban Arts Fund mural at Denver Public Library, Hampden Branch and acknowledged the students involved in the mural’s creation.
“The Four Harmonious Friends of Colorado” was created by artists Tsogo Mijid and Eriko Tsogo with 18 youth and 25 community participants. The mural was inspired by the myth of “The Four Harmonious Friends,” one of the Jātaka tales, part of Buddhist mythology, and often the subject in works of Bhutanese and Tibetan art. Through symbolism and motif, the mural depicts Colorado imagery, including the buffalo, black bear, wolf and mountain goat. The composition consists of a central mandala design surrounded by fantastical landscape. The mural uses traditional Mongolian art, Thangkha and ornamental pattern styles of painting.
“We can achieve anything as a community when we work together harmoniously,” explained artist Eriko Tsogo. “The mural speaks of unity, integrity, friendship, generosity and selflessness for the greater good. Underlying too are the themes of respecting the spiritual potential and of animals and environmental harmony.”
As part of the community engagement component of the project, the artists collaborated with the Uran Biir Colorado Mongolian Art School K-12 students. Taking inspiration from the folklore, students designed and painted characters on the mural based on themes of unity, diversity and friendship.