Madam Walker Legacy Center hosts video essay contest, virtual tour, as it unveils new mural for Black History Month

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INDIANAPOLIS — The Madam Walker Legacy Center is hosting a few different events to celebrate Black History Month.  

There will be a new mural honoring Madam C.J. Walker, a virtual tour of the center and a video essay contest for students to enter. 

The mural features Madam Walker and the artist who made it, Tasha Beckwith. She hopes it serves as an inspiration. 

“The thing that I’m trying to achieve is I’m just trying to make my people look as best as possible and as beautiful as possible in the pieces that I do,” said visual artist Tasha Beckwith. 

Beckwith, whose work includes a piece at MLK and 30th Street, was chosen to create a new mural to honor the life of Madam C.J. Walker. 

“I hope that it inspires people to do their own research. That they’ll find out even more information about her. And then also I hope that it can awaken maybe some people’s entrepreneurial spirits inside,” Beckwith said. 

For her, this mural gave her a chance to learn more about someone she looked up to all her life. 

“I think growing up I always thought of Madam Walker as someone who was just a beauty guru who dealt with hair. But I think dealing with this project I learned even more about her and just how much of an inspiration she was and how she cared about her people and she wanted to uplift women.” 

The design is being kept under wraps until it’s unveiled Tuesday. The Madam Walker Legacy Center partnered with the airport and the arts council to make this happen. 

“We all put our heads together to ensure that not only would this piece reflect something that would be special for the city of Indianapolis, but it also reflected Madam’s legacy,” said the center’s Manager of Programs and Events Devon Ginn. 

Ginn says along with the mural, the center will also be showing off its recent renovations with a virtual tour

“We went under restoration work in 2018 and we’ve been off-site for a long time. We officially moved back in fall of last year,” Ginn said. 

They are offering a chance to win one of these shirts to anyone who watches the video and answers a few questions. 

“We’re really excited to be back in this space, but the tour component was important just to show folks in a safe way, all of the amazing things that took place,” said Ginn. 

The center is also running a video essay contest for all the students across the state. The theme is a civil rights discussion of where do we go from here, based on the keynote speech from the legacy center’s MLK Day Celebration. 

“I feel like students who are going to be our future leaders, it’s important for them to understand where we are and where we were so that it can inform their futures.” 

Essays are due February 28th. Click here for entry details.

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