Lune Whitlock ’20 stands in front of their mural, “Everybody Belongs Here,” in the sports center weight room.
Lune Whitlock ’20 stands in front of their mural, “Everybody Belongs Here,” in the sports center weight room.

Celebrating Inclusion (With Muscle)

New mural in sports center celebrates fitness for all types of bodies

By Sebastian Zinn ’18 | August 30, 2019

The Sports Center has just unveiled a mural in the weight room that celebrates fitness for every body—literally. 

Created by anthro major Lune Whitlock ’20, the mural depicts a row of abstract silhouetted figures, each a different color, representing a variety of body types and age groups. “I wanted the figures in the mural to be easy for patrons to project onto,” they say.

As a frontline worker at the “cage”—the front desk of the Sports Center—Lune noticed that going to the gym and athletics in general can pose a barrier to some Reed students. “Coming into any space as an outsider can be intimidating, and that can be amplified by the discomfort some people feel around spaces like the weight room in which the body and athleticism are often focal points,” they say. 

Aiming to rewrite some of the negative thought patterns that people experience at the gym, and foster an ethos of inclusivity, visibility, and acceptance, Lune submitted a proposal to Michael Lombardo, the director of Athletics, Fitness and Outdoor Programs. He saw the idea as an opportunity to empower all members of the Reed community to use—and enjoy using—the gym. 

We work hard to provide an inclusive and welcoming space for all of our students, and especially our most marginalized,” says Lombardo. “That includes communicating expressly through our words, actions, facility design, and art that all students, regardless of gender, body size, skill level, fitness background, race, and sexual orientation, are warmly welcome.”

Lune grew up in rural Oregon. Reed was at the top of their list of prospective colleges because of its location and its reputation for academic rigor and progressive political discourse. They prefer to pursue art as a personal hobby rather than a profession because it takes external sources of pressure like monetization off of their art, allowing them to focus on personal expression. After graduating this spring, they hope to pursue fashion design, comic book illustration, fiber arts, and sculpture.

Tags: Campus Life, Diversity/Equity/Inclusion, Sports & Adventures, Students