A 3D hologram of George Floyd will find its way through the US South this week, temporarily replacing former Confederate statues as a symbolic call for racial justice and solidarity.
The hologram features a swarm of bright fireflies that swirl into an image of Floyd, a Black man who died in May after a white police officer pressed his knee on Floyd’s neck for nearly nine minutes as Floyd pleaded that he couldn’t breathe.
The officer was fired and has been charged with murder.
Next to the hologram of Floyd’s face, his name appears in graffiti. The writing reflects the many murals that have emerged worldwide following Floyd’s death, which sparked protests against racial inequality from the US to Europe, Asia, Africa and the Middle East.
Change.org and the George Floyd Foundation, established by his family, conceived of the hologram, called A Monumental Change: The George Floyd Hologram Memorial Project.
The project aims to turn spaces formerly occupied by symbols of America’s Confederate past into places of hope and solidarity.
“Since the death of my brother George, his face has been seen all over the world,” Rodney Floyd, George Floyd’s brother, said in a statement. “The hologram will allow my brother’s face to be seen as a symbol for change in places where change is needed most.”
The hologram will debut to the public Tuesday night in Richmond, Virginia, at the site of the former Jefferson Davis Confederate monument, which protesters toppled in June as part of a larger movement to destroy or remove public monuments symbolizing systemic racism.
Local artists, musicians, poets and leaders will attend the launch, which begins at Marcus David Peters Circle at 7:30 p.m. local time.
The hologram will then travel to five stops, including sites in North Carolina and Georgia, mirroring the route of the 1961 Freedom Rides. During the rides, civil rights activists famously rode interstate buses to challenge bus segregation.