51 for 51 Unveils New D.C. Statehood Mural in Historic Anacostia

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Tuesday, September 17, 2019


Washington D.C. — Today, the grassroots D.C. statehood coalition 51 for 51 and other statehood advocates unveiled a new pro-statehood mural, at We Act Radio in historic Anacostia, D.C.

“The American revolution was sparked with the phrase ‘No Taxation Without Representation’ but that’s exactly what exists in the District today,” said Ty Hobson-Powell, a 51 for 51 Youth Advocate. “Congress needs to stop meddling in the District’s affairs and give its residents the full representation they deserve by making D.C. the 51st state—and bypassing the filibuster to do it.”

The mural covers the center wall of the We Act Radio studios’ community outdoor space at 1918 Martin Luther King Ave SE. Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton, former mayor Marion Barry and former TV host Petey Greene are honored on the mural along with the words “We Deserve Statehood.”

Artist Nessar Jahanbin, lives and works in Washington D.C. He started drawing and painting at a very young age and now works with many mediums, including watercolor, acrylic, oil, and clay. He has a BS in political science and a minor in art, and after working at a law firm for half a decade, quit his job and began focusing his time on painting.

“Living in D.C., in the shadow of the Capitol, you never forget how political decisions have a tremendous impact on our day-to-day lives,” said Jahanbin. “But as D.C. residents, we don’t have a say in those decisions, because we’re not a state. I wanted this mural to give a voice to the 700,000 people in the District who don’t have a voice in Congress.”

Nessar now focuses primarily on aerosol, creating public and private murals and canvases. In his studio work he is experimenting with cement and recycled paint cans, repurposing the material and exploring how these materials can be applied to murals as reliefs and installations.

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51 for 51 is a coalition comprised of D.C.-based and national groups committed to equal representation rights for D.C.’s over 700,000 residents. The coalition of 20 progressive groups says American citizens living in the District deserve a voice in Congress and control over their own local laws.

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