American History mural
In tribute to the Black Lives Movement, The Museum of Graffiti has created a large-scale mural on the walls of two buildings at NW 25th Street and 3rd Avenue, titled AMERICAN HISTORY. Focusing on the Black experience in US history starting in the early 1800s through current day, the mural tackles the subjects of police brutality, racial injustice, and resistance.
Curated by Museum of Graffiti, the mural integrates a dozen QR codes that enrich and educate the viewers experience with an audio and video recordings of moments such as Dr. Martin Luther King’s “I Have A Dream” speech, music from Public Enemy and Nina Simone and more. Some of the key moments depicted on the wall will include: Nat Turner, a black American slave who led the only effective, sustained slave rebellion; John Brown’s raid on Harpers Ferry; Fredrick Douglas; Marcus Garvey, founder of the Universal Negro Improvement Association and African Communities League; The massacre of African Americans in Tulsa, Oklahoma aka Black Wall street in 1921, Harriet and Harry T. Moore – organizers for the NAACP in Florida murdered in 1951 by the KKK; Rosa Parks; Emmett Till; Malcolm X; Martin Luther King; The Black Panther Party; Angela Davis; Mohammed Ali; Eleanor Bumpers; Arthur McDuffy and the Miami Riots of 1980; Trayvon Martin; Mike Brown; Colin Kaepernick; BLM; Public Enemy; Breonna Taylor and George Floyd and many more.
Professor Paul Ortiz (Ph.D. Duke University, 2000) advised on the historic portion of the AMERICAN HISTORY mural by the Museum of Graffiti. He is the author of An African American and Latinx History of the United States, which received the 2018 PEN Oakland-Josephine Miles Award for Literary Excellence. His book Emancipation Betrayed: The Hidden History of Black Organizing and White Violence in Florida from Reconstruction to the Bloody Election of 1920 was awarded the Harry T. and Harriette V. Moore Book Prize from the Florida Historical Society and the Florida Institute of Technology. He also co-edited and conducted oral history interviews for the book, Remembering Jim Crow: African Americans Tell About Life in the Jim Crow South.
The Museum of Graffiti was contacted by MLK Mural Project (MLK = Moving Lives of Kids) who received a grant from Pinnacle Housing to create a mural in line with the current state of affairs. The mural was created by eight South Florida based graffiti artists including: 1DER, E-Tone, Cyst, Cale, Kyle Holbrook, Tierra Armstrong, Black Brain, and PHD. “I think it’s important for artists to use their platform to speak to social issues and help bring awareness, education, and inspiration for change and pushing things in a positive direction,” says Kyle Holbrook, artist and founder of MLK Mural Project (Moving Lives of Kids).