Bronze Sculptures Honor Icons of Black Lives Matter in NY

Three bronze busts depicting the late Congressman John Lewis, Breonna Taylor, and George Floyd have been placed in New York’s Union Square as part of Confront Art’s inaugural “SEEINJUSTICE” exhibition.

The statues, created by Chris Carnabuci, stand 10 feet tall on platforms and honor ongoing lives and messages through art, bringing together three iconic people.

All of them became icons of the Black Lives Matter protests after they were killed by the police in 2020—as well as one of late congressman and civil rights activist John Lewis have been erected in New York’s Union Square.

He’s installed the trio of Floyd, Taylor, and Lewis in front of Union Square’s equestrian monument to President George Washington, a bronze statue by Henry Kirke Brown that dates to 1856, making it the oldest sculpture in the New York City Parks collection.

As a nod to the history of public monuments, Carnabuci painted each work with metallic bronze paint. Family members, hip-hop musicians, and other social figures have added inscriptions to the base of each portrait.


“I want the art to provide an environment for civil discourse where we can discuss our differences and maybe even come to an understanding of each other’s perspectives.”
Artist Chris Carnabuci

Carnabuci is best known for his 22-foot-tall Burning Man sculpture Mariposita (2019), of a woman emerging from a giant egg.

The choice of Union Square was also deliberate. In an Instagram post, the organization emphasized the site’s historical role as a “gathering space for free speech and assembly for a mosaic of all religion, race, and ages.”

The pieces will stay through October 30 and then travel to different cities all over the country. Ultimately, they’ll be auctioned off with proceeds going to charities linked to all three people.

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