Posted on June 20, 2022

Two-Story Black Power Hair Pick, Symbol of African Identity, Erected Near Gallier Hall

Doug MacCash,, June 17, 2022

A gigantic Afro hair pick, decorated with a peace sign and surmounted by a clenched Black fist, popped up in Lafayette Square on Friday evening. A social media video shows New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell pulling away sheeting to expose the estimated 24-foot-tall steel creation, “All Power to All People,” by artist Hank Willis Thomas.

The enormous sculpture recalls the Black power movement of the 1960s, when the silhouettes of hair pick combs and raised fists were symbols of racial identity and political activism. {snip}


“This sculpture is very fitting for this time and place,” a Cantrell administration spokesperson wrote, when asked via email about the Thomas artwork. “{snip} The fight and struggle for equality, respect and freedom continue to this day for those of us who continue to be discriminated against because of the color of our skin and the texture and style of our hair.”

The spokesperson did not answer questions about the cost of the project.