Philadelphia picks winning design for Harriet Tubman statue after controversy over original choice

The city of Philadelphia has picked the winning design for a Harriet Tubman statue outside City Hall after facing criticism over its original choice of a white artist who’d been selected without competition. Alvin Pettit beat out four other semifinalists with a design called “A Higher Power: The Call of a Freedom Fighter.

A group of artists and activists protested, saying the city should have held an open competition to give a chance to other artists, including Black artists — especially since it was for a piece of public art. “As an artist, it’s hurtful and it is traumatizing,” Dee Jones, a textile artist, told city officials and Wofford during a community meeting in June 2022, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported. “If it was an open call, and Wesley was chosen, it would be fine.

Sculptor Alvin Pettit will design the new Harriet Tubman statue in PhiladelphiaAfter a year of controversy, Mayor Kenney and Creative Philly announced the winning design and artist for a new Harriet Tubman statue to be erected outside City Hall. Read more ⮕

Who is Alvin Pettit, the artist chosen for Philly’s Harriet Tubman statue?After a year of controversy, Mayor Kenney and Creative Philly announced the winning design and artist for the new Harriet Tubman statue to be erected outside City Hall. Read more ⮕

Harriet Tubman as ‘freedom fighter’ statue chosen for City HallAfter a public input campaign, artist Alvin Pettit’s ‘A Higher Power: The Call of the Freedom Fighter’ design for a statue of Harriet Tubman has been selected… Read more ⮕

Artist unveils vision for Harriet Tubman statue outside City HallLeaders in Philadelphia on Monday introduced an artist whose design of a forthcoming Harriet Tubman statue was selected to be erected outside City Hall. Read more ⮕

A controversial approach to fix Kensington | Morning NewsletterMeet the artist chosen to create Philly’s Harriet Tubman statue Read more ⮕

Creative Philly reveals five designs for the new Harriet Tubman statue and asks you to rank them in a public surveyThe city shared the designs from five artists competing to create a new Harriet Tubman statue after a year of controversy about the initial no-bid commissioning process. Read more ⮕