Beyond the Canvas: Episode 2 Taking the Stage
George Floyd’s family gathers in Virginia for hologram tribute
RICHMOND, Va. — George Floyd, the Black man whose death prompted global protests and calls against police brutality and for racial justice, is now the subject of a traveling art installation that was first publicly unveiled in Richmond, Virgina, on July 28. Members of Floyd’s family gathered to see the flickering hologram image of Floyd’s head appear before the city’s Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee monument.
Organized by Change.org and the George Floyd Foundation, “The George Floyd Hologram Memorial Project” is a public art installation that aims to temporarily replace former Confederate statues as a symbolic call to continue the fight for racial justice. The display is a hologram of fireflies that form into an image of Floyd, with his name in graffiti.
Video by Coleman Jennings/VPM News
Floyd’s brother Philonise “P.J.” Floyd said, during a first look at the project Monday, that it is a painful image to witness.
“I’m hurting right now,” Floyd said. “I’m happy to be here. But it’s just hard just being here, looking at my brother … Never thought I’d see my brother on a hologram. Always thought that we would grow old, fish and die off together.”
Floyd called for unity and an end to racism.
“Starting right here, where it should have been started years ago, we can start here right now and put it together. We can have unity,” Floyd said. “That’s what my brother would want.”
On Tuesday, during the public unveiling, Floyd’s family was greeted at the area activists have dubbed Marcus-David Peters Circle with musical performances and spoken word poetry.
At the foot of the Robert E. Lee statue on historic Monument Avenue, Floyd thanked protesters for their continued fight for racial justice.
“My brother’s death will not be in vain, because we have people like you, and you and you and you,” he said, pointing to the crowd of several hundred people.
Local activist Sherri Robinson said the Floyd family brought new energy to Richmond.
“It’s definitely a good way to motivate us in this movement. We just want to make sure that we stay focused,” Robinson said.
The African American Heritage Group Untold RVA performed along with Richmond Drum Collective and No BS! Brass Band.
“The George Floyd Hologram Memorial Project” was designed by Kaleida Imaging and projected by local Virginia company, Quince Imaging. It will travel to multiple cities throughout the country after leaving Richmond.
This report originally appeared on local station VPM.
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