A dynamic Boston artist.
Illustrating our vibrant city.

Patterned Behavior by Silvia López Chavez has transformed and enlivened an unwelcoming concrete underpass along the The Charles River Esplanade by creating a striking, joyful mural that echoes the beauty, diversity, and energy of Boston.


about the piece

Commissioned by the Esplanade Association and curated and produced by Now + There, Patterned Behavior is the second piece in our 2017 Year of the Woman programming. This colorful mural takes inspiration from the Esplanade’s immediate environment, and the many ways this space is enjoyed and used day-to-day. It reflects on the relationships and patterns created by the human interaction with the space and the busy intersection of water, land and sky.

We're proud to provide López Chavez, a local artist, the creative freedom to reimagine a utilitarian concrete environment into one that will spark new connections and serves a park that has grown and changed since its dedication in 1910.

Located just west of the Massachusetts Avenue bridge, Patterned Behavior is the first mural commissioned by the Esplanade Association. It is visible from the walking path along the river as well as from Storrow Drive, Memorial Drive, and from the river.

In-progress shot of  Patterned Behavior  taken from the water.

In-progress shot of Patterned Behavior taken from the water.

READ THE Press release

patterned behavior in the press

Engage with Patterned behavior

  • Visit the mural site, take in the environment, snap a photo, share to Instagram with #EsplanadeArtBOS or #PatternedBehavior to enter our photo contest. 

  • Find out which of the bold colors Silvia used in the mural best describes your personality with our Patterned Behavior Color Quiz.

  • Follow #PatternedBehavior on Twitter & Instagram to join the conversation about the transformative power of public art in Boston.


Now + There selected Chavez for this project because of her sophisticated use of bright color harmonies and patterns, and in support of her dedication to mentoring young women through collaborative public art works.

With roots in the Dominican Republic, interdisciplinary artist Silvia López Chavez has based her studio and social art practice in the Boston area for over fifteen years. Her work investigates the basic human need to connect with each other on multiple levels: socially, politically and culturally. She explores the intellectual and emotional narratives of joy, struggle, acceptance and assimilation as well as the change and growth that affect daily life. Her work is informed by her own personal narratives and responds to her identities as an immigrant, a woman of color, an educator, a visual artist and a designer.

López Chavez is motivated by the power of the creative process as an agent for positive change. Her collaborative works with community partners include mural commissions, site-specific installations and pop-up interactions within Boston, Cambridge, Newton, Chelsea, Lynn, Salem, Beverly, Danvers and Marblehead. 

In addition to her fine art practice, she is an award-winning design professional, working for over 15 years with high-profile companies and institutions.

Ann Lewis in the studio.

The Charles River Esplanade is a place where you can find beauty within an ordinary urban landscape. It is my favorite part of the city, where the bustling human activity fuses with the joy that comes from being by the water. It’s a place where many people and many things intersect and, can connect in meaningful ways. That really speaks to me, since I am always striving to create art that builds connections. Patterned Behavior is certainly a reflection of that.

Creating this mural is an opportunity for different kinds of connections. For me, it’s a way to connect more deeply with this place that I love. For the Esplanade Association it’s a way to reach out to the community and offer them another way to enjoy the walking path and a new piece of cultural programming. For Now + There it’s a way to invite more people into the conversation about public art in Boston. And what excites me most is that I’m creating this artwork for the people of Boston as an opportunity to connect to each other; to increase new positive experiences, dialogue, and create a deeper sense of belonging with their city.





The project is privately funded through money raised by the  Esplanade Association.

Esplanade Association is dedicated to providing cultural experiences to the millions of visitors that enjoy the park each year. Much like public open space, public art builds a sense of community. Silvia’s Patterned Behavior mural will make the Esplanade more welcoming and will be a must-see attraction in the park. We are inspired not only by the beautiful artwork but by the conversations and connections that this mural will foster.

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