Mount Pleasant Library: Battaglia Murals – Washington DC

Project type: Art, Murals
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Description

In 1934, Aurelius Battaglia painted two murals for the Mt. Pleasant neighborhood library,  “Animal Circus” and  “Animal Orchestra.”   They occupy two reading alcoves off the Children’s Room to this day. Funding was provided by the Public Works of Art Project (PWAP), an early New Deal relief program for unemployed artists.

Later, Battaglia moved to California and joined Walt Disney, animating classics such as Dumbo, Pinocchio and Fantasia.

Mount Pleasant is a branch of the DC public library system.  The lovely building was paid for by the Carnegie Foundation in 1903.

Source notes

Project originally submitted by Peter Cizmadia on July 22, 2013.
Additional contributions by New Deal Art Registry.

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Location Info


3160 16th Street
Washington, DC 20010

Coordinates: 38.93135, -77.0369

3 comments on “Mount Pleasant Library: Battaglia Murals – Washington DC

  1. Peter Cizmadia

    I recently visited this library and would like to add some info.

    In 1934, painter Aurelius Battaglia was commissioned under the Public Works of Art Program to paint murals in the Mount Pleasant Library in DC. ‘Animal Circus’ and ‘Animal Orchestra’ occupy two reading alcoves to this day. Later he moved to California and joined Disney, animating classics such as Dumbo, Pinocchio and Fantasia. You can see a clear line from these paintings to those films, with that brilliant motion-laden figure work and expressive yet realistic representation.

    I do have more detailed pictures that I can provide, as well. Thanks!

    • Gabriel Milner

      Thank you for passing along this information–we’ve added it to our entry for this site. We’d love to see the pictures, as well. You may email them to [email protected].

  2. Pedro Sera-leyva

    I remember seeing a large mural in the main room of the library that depicted historic scenes. Are you familiar with this?
    Last time I was there, it looked like it had been painted over.

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