Since the death of George Floyd a month ago, NYC—and indeed the entire world—has been engulfed by protests, marches and demands for statue removals that not only call for an end to police brutality and racial injustice, but also for a veritable rewrite of history to account for the role that white supremacy has played in it.
While it's still too early to know what kind of change this movement will create in the long term, it has already left an indelible mark on the American psyche—most visibly, perhaps, in the form of the Black Lives Matter murals that have been painted on streets across the country, from Washington D.C. to Oakland, CA. Murals that have come under repeated criticism for prioritizing superficial gestures over any concrete action or change.
At the moment, there is one in Brooklyn, and now, another is on the way in Harlem. Starting on July 1, eight local artists will begin painting the mural along two blocks of Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Boulevard, one of the area's major thoroughfares. It will take up a stretch between 125th and 127th Streets, with the words "Black Lives Matter" pointing in the direction of traffic on the northbound and southbound lanes.
According to Patch, the Harlem effort was an addition to a plan announced by Mayor De Blasio to paint a mural in each of the five boroughs, including one already slated for a spot near Foley Square in Lower Manhattan. While those are still to be rolled out, the mural in Harlem will be revealed on July 4.
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