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At nearly 6 p.m. yesterday, four people were putting the finishing touches on a mosaic mural on the back of a warehouse at Roxbury Farm and Garden Center.
The purpose of the community art project is to promote diversity and encourage understanding.
The work of nine student art team members, two adult coordinators and countless volunteers was recognized with a toast of nonalcoholic cider and a feeling of immense pride.
"We've had so many volunteers," said coordinator Suzanne Moe. "Literally hundreds of hands have touched this wall."
Some who did not touch it physically touched it in other ways.
When one shade of blue tile ran out Thursday, it looked like there would be no way to complete the project on time. It typically takes McIntyre Tiles of California four weeks to custom create the tiles, which will withstand weather and time.
When Moe explained that the project hung in the balance, the company sent a shipment out in less than 24 hours.
When it arrived, Moe called the company again and had a group of volunteers, by then back at work, yell out their thanks.
Over the next few days, adult experts will create the mural's border, embedding in it donated objects from those who worked on the wall.
With each donated object is an explanation of it and why it was given--stories as diverse as the people whose hands created the artwork.
"When you look closely, you can see all the differences," Moe said.
"You can see the different techniques used, the different skill levels of the people who worked on the mural. But when you stand back, you see it as one whole.
"You don't see the differences."
And that, Moe said, is the point.Laura L. Hutchison: 540/374-5485