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As part of the Biden Harris campaign’s GOTV efforts, the campaign has commissioned eight Black artists to create inspirational murals in predominantly minority communities across the United States. The murals – placed in pivotal battleground states including Wisconsin, Michigan, Florida, Texas, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Georgia and North Carolina for the 2020 election – have brought attention of activists, celebrities and local officials as they help to encourage communities of color to vote.
“We need a leader who is strong, shows strong leadership in his actions” Artist Tia Richardson
Each artist is local to the area where the murals were created, and the pieces showcase their individual interpretation of the importance of exercising the right to vote in this year’s decisive presidential election.
Illustrating the importance of political art in national campaigns, the hand-painted mural in Miami has been featured as the centerpiece of several ‘Get Out the Vote’ block parties. Basketball legend Magic Johnson filmed a campaign ad in front of the Detroit mural.
The artists represent the diversity of the Black community, from women and immigrants to small business owners.
About Each Artist and Mural Location
Tia Richardson – Milwaukee: as full-time community mural artist, Richardson works with people from all walks of life to share their perspectives together through murals. Her mural of Harris, Biden and John Lewis named “Pursuing the Vision” is located at 5231 North 35th Street.
Shawn Perkins – Detroit: With the nickname “SP the Plug,” Shawn loves to trademark most pieces with an electrical outlet or plug of some sort. An acronym for “Painting a Legacy Under God,” it represents how he uses his art to connect with others. His mural is located at 19344 Livernois Street.
Johnathan Desrosiers – Miami: As a Haitian-American, Johnathan says this mural commission featuring Joe Biden and Kamala Harris is one of the most important pieces of his life. His art is a testament of the influences that drive him today. The hand-painted mural stands in the Liberty City section of Miami at 2550 NW 205th Avenue.
Chukwunonso Ofili – Houston: A multi-faceted artist and entertainer based in Houston, Texas, Ofili’s Art is centered around images of Afrocentric culture. The desire to expand the taste and reach of his culture has driven him to be a tireless supporter of the arts and artistic expression especially in the African diaspora community. The mural is hand-painted and located at 3206 Lyons Avenue.
Ernel Martinez – Philadelphia: Born in Belize and raised in both South Central Los Angeles and Detroit, Ernel believes that art enriches communities and is the path to true collaboration. His introduction to the art world came in the form of graffiti and developed by earning his Masters of Fine Arts from the University of Pennsylvania. Since 2003, Ernel has been creating public art in the city of Philadelphia, and working with various non-profits and social services to provide art to disenfranchised youth. His mural is as spin on the famous Philadelphia LOVE statue and is located at 725 S. Broad Street.
Isaiah Williams – Cleveland: a consistent and prolific practitioner of expression through art, is a self-taught artist who is always finding ways to expand his creative arsenal and learn more tricks of the trade. He routinely seeks ways to inspire the youth and bring the community together. His mural is located at 5808 Clark Avenue.
Joseph McKinney – Atlanta: a self-taught painter from Cincinnati, Ohio who currently resides in Atlanta, Joseph’s art career began after graduating from The Ohio State University with a degree in Business Marketing and working at American Greeting Cards. Today, he is a full-time artist creating paintings to represent stories that evoke those emotions and encourage users to embrace the prospects of change. The mural is located at 537 Joseph E. Boone Boulevard.
Antoine Williams – Durham: Antoine Williams’ mixed-media work is known for investigating themes of power, the body and the monstrous. Antoine has created his own mythology of social monsters about the complexities of contemporary Black life. A graduate of the University of North Carolina, Antoine is an artist-educator. He helped start the God City Art Collective in Charlotte, where he participated in a number of socially engaged, community-based art projects, such as pop-up art shows, after school art programs, underground rap concerts, and film festivals. His mural is located at 112 West Main Street.