- location Thomas Paine Plaza
September 19, 2017
About the Project
Situated across from City Hall on Thomas Paine Plaza in Fall 2017, Hank Willis Thomas’ All Power to All People was a public art intervention around identity and representation in Philadelphia. Thomas’ Afro pick sculpture stood at eight feet tall and weighed close to 800 pounds. The Afro pick, as Thomas notes, “exists today as many things to different people: it is worn as adornment, a political emblem, and signature of collective identity. The Afro pick continues to develop itself as a testament to innovation.” The temporary monument was placed here as a symbol and site, as the artist adds, “to highlight ideas related to community, strength, perseverance, comradeship, and resistance to oppression.” Thomas’ work recalled the scale of Pop artist Claes Oldenburg’s monumental everyday objects, such as the Clothespin and Paint Torch, while marking the lack of commemorative statues that address equal justice and belonging.
Major support for Monument Lab projects staged in Philadelphia’s five squares provided by The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage. An expanded artist roster and projects at additional neighborhood sites made possible by the William Penn Foundation. Lead corporate support provided by Bank of America. Generous additional support provided by the National Endowment for the Arts.
For a full list of funders click here.