Black Lives Matter street mural coming to Richmond
Venture Richmond receives approval from two city boards
A privately funded Black Lives Matter mural stretching nearly 200 feet long and two feet high will be painted in downtown Richmond near the Virginia State Capitol grounds, Venture Richmond announced Monday.
Approved unanimously by the city’s Public Art Commission and Planning Commission, the project will be spearheaded by Richmond artists Hamilton Glass and Ed Trask, both of whom have painted numerous outdoor murals in the city. The mural will be located on the 800/900 block of East Grace Street near St. Paul’s Episcopal and St. Peter Catholic churches and the Barbara Johns Building.
The BLM mural, like those in Washington, D.C., and New York City, will be painted on the street itself. Anedra Bourne, deputy executive director for Venture Richmond, said in a statement that the artists, the Downtown Neighborhood Association, business people and others have been working on the idea since June.
“We know there are those who will say we are late with this project,” Bourne said in a statement. “And, admittedly, we wish it could’ve happened much sooner but the process is important. There will undoubtedly be a variety of perspectives and sentiments. However, as an organization we believe that this most basic of statements — that all Black Lives Matter — deserves to be embraced. We don’t see this as a moment lost but as an ongoing, powerful movement.”
According to documents filed by Venture Richmond with the planning commission, the project would take about five days to paint, and it would start between mid-August to early September, pending city permits and approval. Bourne says the group is “pursuing plans to involve more community members and artists in the process, and the hope that rather than simply mimicking other solid yellow murals in other communities, Richmond’s will be unique.”