Maya Angelou, Reimagined Through Art

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Carlos Gonzalez for The New York Times


More than two dozen artists honored the poet, artist and activist with murals at the Los Angeles high school that bears her name. Our photographer captured the works being created.

By Carlos Gonzalez and Amanda Svachula

A Shepard Fairey mural of Maya Angelou, mid-laugh in the sunshine, now sweeps across an exterior wall of a Los Angeles high school bearing her name.

The exuberant portrait by the contemporary street artist is one of 28 works honoring Angelou that are now featured on the school’s grounds as part of a recent public arts project.

“One of her philosophies was that joy is an act of resistance,” Mr. Fairey said of Angelou, the poet, artist and activist who died in 2014. “This idea, that all these hateful, angry things that people just recklessly throw around — if you refuse to let them change your nature, and still find things to celebrate in your life, that’s just part of the battle.”


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