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John Lewis task force to announce artist to create monument on the Decatur Square

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John Lewis task force to announce artist to create monument on the Decatur Square

The John Lewis mural painted by Sean Schwab in the Sweet Auburn neighborhood of Atlanta, ,July 29, 2020. Photo by Dean Hesse.

Decatur, GA — The John Lewis Commemorative Task Force will announce the artist selected to create a statue of the late Rep. John Lewis on Thursday, Dec. 29, during an artist meet-and-greet at 6:30 p.m. at the Manuel J. Maloof Auditorium, 1300 Commerce Drive in Decatur.

The DeKalb County Board of Commissioners, at its Oct. 25 meeting, accepted a monument to the late Rep. John Lewis that will replace the Confederate obelisk that was removed from the Decatur Square in 2020.

The John Lewis Commemorative Task Force was created in 2021 and designated the former site of the Confederate obelisk as the future memorial site honoring Lewis. The monument will be placed in the same spot, in front of the Historic DeKalb County Courthouse.

Task force members and inaugural supporters will gather at the Maloof Auditorium in downtown Decatur for a reception to meet the artist, according to a press release.

“We are thrilled to have reached this milestone in the life of the Task Force and we are so pleased that we found a world-renowned artist who captures the soul and spirit of his subjects,” Decatur Mayor Patti Garrett said. “This project has been a labor of love for all of us who knew and loved Congressman Lewis. He served our district and the world with such honor and distinction. His statue will stand as a reminder to all who pass that once this great but humble man walked among us, and we are happy we elected him over and over to serve us and the world. He was truly the conscience of the Congress.”

The artist will begin working on the monument immediately. Once the statue is complete, the task force will sponsor a community-wide event to unveil the work in front of the Historic DeKalb Courthouse.

The meet-and-greet event will feature speeches and video presentations about the work of the task force and the artist. Speakers will include task force conveners and chairs, Decatur Mayor Patti Garrett, former DeKalb CEO Burrell Ellis, and DeKalb County Commissioner Mereda Davis Johnson.

For more information about the task force, click here.

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