The mural was commissioned by Harris County Commissioner Rodney Ellis, the Houston Society for Change, and 88 C.H.U.M.P., a non-profit social activism organization created by Floyd’s football teammates.
This street art piece is a mural dedicated to George Floyd, made on February 7, 2021. George Floyd was an African American man who was killed after a Minneapolis police encounter where an officer kneeled on his neck during an arrest causing his death. The event was captured on video and sparked international outrage and protest against the police interaction, oppression, and killing of people of color in the United States. This piece is located in Houston, Texas outside of Jack Yates High School which Floyd attended. It was commissioned by Harris County Commissioner, Rodney Ellis, and nonprofit 88 C.H.U.M.P. (an organization created by Floyd’s childhood friends). This mural consists of the words “BLACK LIVES MATTER” followed by Floyd’s number 88 jersey in the school’s trademark red and yellow colors. The piece is painted on the street and spans about two city blocks. The artist, Jonah Elijah mentions that this mural was an action of the community and for the community, in addition to national representation. It not only acts as a message for Black Lives Matter, but the mural also serves as a connection between the people of the community. This mural also acts as a message outside of the community by being a symbol of the need for action in the country and awareness of the people of color who are dying because of unjust law enforcement. "George Floyd's life mattered. Just like Breonna Taylor, Sandra Bland, and the countless other lives we have lost just in the last few years to police violence," Ellis said, "As a son of Houston's historically black neighborhood of Third Ward, George Floyd is a part of our local black history, which is why it was necessary to honor his memory with this piece of art during Black History Month.” After its creation, it was picked up by many news organizations and there have been no reports of removal or vandalism on the work as of now. After the piece was made the county commissioners voted to allocate $25 million for programs in reforming legal system methodologies.
O'Kane, Caitlin. “Mural Dedicated to George Floyd and Black Lives Matter Painted Outside His High School.” CBS News. CBS Interactive, February 8, 2021. https://www.cbsnews.com/news/george-floyd-black-lives-matter-mural/.
Turner, Re'Chelle. “Yates High School Graduate Bringing Black Lives Matter Mural to Third Ward Community.” KPRC. KPRC Click2Houston, February 5, 2021. https://www.click2houston.com/news/local/2021/02/05/jack-yates-graduate-bringing-black-lives-matter-mural-to-third-ward-community/.
Alexander, Author: Chloe. “Giant Street Mural Dedicated to George Floyd, Black Lives Matter Movement Painted in Front of Yates HS.” khou.com, February 7, 2021. https://www.khou.com/article/news/local/george-floyd-mural-black-lives-matter-yates-high-school/285-22e6f59e-5097-4651-927e-820537009b33
Researched by Sawyer Hammond
Photographer: CBSDFW.COM from CNN