Myron Laban painted this mural at Milwaukee and Western avenues in 2020. It’s one of his “Uplift” series of murals around Chicago.

Myron Laban painted this mural at Milwaukee and Western avenues in 2020. It’s one of his “Uplift” series of murals around Chicago.

Nicky Andrews / Sun-Times

Art ‘meant for people in dark places,’ Myron Laban says of his ‘Uplift’ murals around Chicago

He’s a pharmacist as well as an artist and says, with both jobs, his aim is to help people heal. Like with his mural in Bucktown of a faceless adult and a boy moving forward through a field of flowers.

For a decade, Myron Laban has been on the lookout for drab walls in Chicago on which he can paint murals.

Laban, 27, says he isn’t just looking to make them prettier. He’s hoping the results might inspire people, too, especially those facing hard times or mental illness.

He says he wants his work to be uplifting, to remind people life isn’t always going to be difficult, that “hard things” might come their way, but “they also go.”

“I don’t like to draw dark things,” he says, “because the art is meant for people in dark places.”

Like the mural he painted in 2020 at Milwaukee and Western avenues, centered on a faceless figure carrying a young boy through flowers and grass. He sees the faceless figure as symbolic of life and the boy as a force for optimism.

Artist Myron Laban.

Artist Myron Laban.

Provided

Everyone experiences hardships differently, and everyone finds their own ways to heal, says Laban, who’s also a pharmacist. He says both of his jobs have the same aim.

“I use my different professions to heal people,” he says.

And, he says, “Medicine isn’t always the answer.”

That’s where art comes in, he says. He has created more than 10 “Uplift” murals around Chicago and plans to do more.

As the son of Egyptian immigrants, Laban says he tries to make his art inclusive and often paints children of color.

Myron Laban painted this mural in the 700 block of South California Avenue.

Myron Laban painted this mural in the 700 block of South California Avenue.

Provided

Myron Laban painted this mural in the 1800 block of North Milwaukee Avenue.

Myron Laban painted this mural in the 1800 block of North Milwaukee Avenue.

Provided

This mural at 2834 W. Roosevelt Rd. is among the works that Myron Laban created in his “Uplift” series around Chicago.

This mural at 2834 W. Roosevelt Rd. is among the works that Myron Laban created in his “Uplift” series around Chicago.

Provided

Murals

Chicago’s murals & mosaics


Part of a series on public art. More murals added every week.

Click on the map below for a selection of Chicago-area murals

The Latest
The fundraiser will be at the home of a family friend on Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts. The campaign has at least 10 other fundraising events over the last 10 days of July.
The boy was in an alley about 3 p.m. Friday when someone approached him and opened fire, police said.
CPS made a mistake when it put temporary federal pandemic aid into its permanent spending base. Now, the money’s running out. A bailout seems unlikely.
At least 28 people in a dozen states have gotten sick. All of the people known to be part of the outbreak have been hospitalized.