Alewives and Mercury Fish
Lake Park and 55th, in Metra Underpass
A strange and fascinating work which is mainly meant to deal with
the problem of pollution in Lake Michigan. When it was painted,
an alien species of fish called alewives were causing great damage
to the native lake fish, while mercury had recently been discovered
to be a serious and deadly element in lake water. Like "Under
City Stone" which is across the street from it, "Alewives
and Mercury Fish" was a serious attack on the way things
were in its time.
Aside from politics, the mural has many things to think about.
Who are the women with children who seem to hover over a lake
filled with dead fish? Are they meant to look like Jesus and his
disciples in the "Last Supper?" Why do the children
in the foreground seem to look at us, and not the lake?