Traveling Arts Exhibit Hopes to Galvanize “All People”

By Jennifer McKee

A public art exhibit promoting racial harmony is making a cross-country tour.

 “All Power to All People” uses images such as the Afro pick and the Black power salute—key symbols of Black identity—to promote social justice and unite people of all backgrounds. It also asks the question, “what should our monuments of the future look like?”

The exhibit kicked off in Atlanta and is on view at the Human Rights Headquarters in Washington, D.C. through August 28. The closing weekend coincides with this year’s anniversary march celebrating the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom, where Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., delivered his 1963 “I Have a Dream” speech.

 “All Power to All People” will also be exhibited in Brooklyn, Los Angeles and Philadelphia in advance of the November 2020 presidential election. Dates are yet to be determined; consult www.allpowertoallpeople.org for details.

Hank Willis Thomas is the man behind the 28-foot-tall work. The conceptual artist is known for intertwining the issues of identity, politics and popular culture as they pertain to American race relations. He has been exhibited the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the High Museum in Atlanta and the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao in Spain, among many others.

The sculpture was inspired by Thomas’ “All Power to All People” work made for the Mural Arts Philadelphia and Monument Lab in 2017 and was shown at Burning Man in 2019.

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Burning Man Photo @A. Patterson
Philadelphia Close-Up Courtesy Hank Willis Thomas and Mural Arts Philadelphia. Photo by Steve Weinik.

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