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Philadelphia unveils first-ever statue depicting an African American woman

Black Women in Sports

Philadelphia unveils first-ever statue depicting an African American woman

By Julia Hatmaker | via

Philadelphia welcomed its first-ever free standing statue of an individual African American girl on July 31.

The statue, titled MVP, was unveiled at Smith Playground in the City of Brotherly Love by public art officials and the artist, Brian McCutcheon. It showcases a young middle-school-aged woman clutching a basketball, poised to make a decision. Does she dribble down the court? Pass? Shoot? It’s a moment of possibility, and one that city workers hope will inspire those in the South Philadelphia neighborhood it resides in.

“As an African American female, I am so proud of MVP as it depicts a young person of color and a female figure,” said Kelly Lee, chief cultural officer for the city. “These are characteristics not traditionally reflected in  …

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I am a future butterfly at the stage of growth when I am turning into an adult. I am enclosed in a hard case shell formed by love, family, and friends. It is the hardest stage of becoming a black butterfly. You will encounter many hardships only to come out stronger and better than what you went in. At this stage, you are finding out who you truly are and how to love yourself.

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What Does It Mean To Be “Black Butterfly Beautiful”

The image of the butterfly has come to define the many expressions of the feminine black consciousness and for a good reason. The butterfly is the perfect articulation of the exquisite beauty of nature. Whether tiny or large, brightly colored or more subdued, the butterfly’s allure is undeniable. Each one displays its own unique patterns and hues, and no one species outshines any other.

Similarly, there is no one ideal image of a black woman -- each is gorgeous in her right. All African-Americans share a glorious history of struggle and perseverance that has funneled into the modern black renaissance. And, like the graceful butterfly, the awakened black woman exemplifies the dazzling beauty of that cultural evolution.

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