When Imani was first scheduled to create a mural, she went to the Niagara Falls Underground Railroad Heritage Museum for a tour. That’s where she learned about the Historic Cataract House — and she instantly felt that the community should know more about this important location. Her goal was to make this mural strong, powerful, and eye-catching. She wanted it to get people to wonder about the Cataract House and be inspired to learn more about it. When designing the mural, Imani chose to make it look like a movie poster, with the characters in the foreground, because in reality what the wait staff of the House were doing — helping escaped slaves reach freedom — was all happening behind the scenes. To help really keep the focus on the people, Imani chose a limited color scheme of red, purple, and yellow.
Historic Cataract House
About the Artist
Imani Williamson has been involved in the fine arts for a long time. She attended Buffalo Academy for Visual and Performing Arts and went to Daemen College, where she first studied animation and then switched to illustration. This mural is her first — usually, she has focused on smaller scale drawings and paintings. She specializes in both traditional and digital mediums, but she especially enjoys working with acrylics. Signatures of her work include vibrant colors as well as spiritual elements such as rays of sun, haloes, stars, planets, and eyes. Imani is currently attending Daemen College for Illustration and has exhibited her work throughout Buffalo.