Black Lives Matter mural on Plymouth Avenue, photographed by Georgia Fort
Black Lives Matter mural on Plymouth Avenue, photographed by Georgia Fort

Kelly Brown ’05, Christopheraaron Deanes ’96, and Melodee Strong ’06 painted the C, E, and S, respectively, in a Black Lives Matter mural on Plymouth Avenue in North Minneapolis.

“My idea was really just to create a cool pattern, something really colorful," Brown told City Pages. "I stuck with a warm orange palette, I chose this approach because it’s simple enough—to try to create a good dimension with it, to make it pop—but then looking around to see what everybody else does, trying to make sure that the colors coordinate with some of the stuff around it.”

"I think about my four-year-old son, who I took a photo of—he’s going to be holding a Black Power symbol—making sure that there’s a legacy behind for him," said Deanes. "What does that look like for him having to navigate those European spaces here in America? Because it’s been very difficult for me as an adult male. We’re trying to create a brighter, better, more powerful future for them to have equity among their peers who are not brown. That’s the premise of the work.”

"I have BLM at the top to represent the three women who started the Black Lives Matter movement, and then I have stars coming off of that," said Strong. "Three will be dedicated to three mamas—Trayvon Martin, Eric Garner, and Mike Brown’s mom—because they are now continuing the movement and the change through civil service because they’re all running for office or have received it. And then I’m going to have Philando Castile’s girlfriend on one of the stars.”

Learn More