‘The Embrace’ to Be Unveiled at the Boston Common Friday - Firenewsfeed!

‘The Embrace’ to Be Unveiled at the Boston Common Friday

‘The Embrace' to Be Unveiled at the Boston Common Friday

Friday is set to be a historic day on the Boston Common, as The Embrace monument is finally unveiled, honoring the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Coretta Scott King.

The fencing was still up around the monument Friday morning, which shows the arms of King Jr. and his wife.

The process to honor the Kings began five years ago – with an idea and competition between 126 artists conceptualizing what a monument to MLK would mean.

The Boston Common is where the Kings had their first date, and it’s not far from the Parkman Bandstand where King spoke back in 1965, making it a natural choice for the new monument.

The winning design was inspired by the photo of Dr. King smiling as he embraces his wife, moments after winning the Nobel Peace Prize in 1964.

Embrace Boston’s executive director said it’s the meaning behind the actual embrace that he hopes resonates with people experiencing it.

“We wanted to get away from this great person version of statues and we wanted people to imagine that those are their arms, those are the arms of someone who has embraced them, those are the arms of someone that they want to embrace, they have embraced,” Imari Paris Jeffries said. “It’s a memorial to honor the Kings and those other leaders, but it’s also a memorial for all of us.”

The monument also includes 65 names of other Boston leaders memorialized on the plaza. The 22-foot high bronze sculpture, sitting on a circular granite plaza, is much more than just a monument to MLK’s life and legacy, though.

According to the principal architect involved in bringing The Embrace to life, the main message is love.

“What I love about it is you can actually feel their embrace, you can get inside this, it’s occupiable, so the idea that we can kind of feel that message, feel their love, I think is really inspiring,” MASS Design Group principal architect Jonathan Evans said. “Our hope is that it becomes in some ways kind of a call to action, this idea that inspires us to take that message further and keep going.”

The senior pastor at the 12th Baptist Church in Roxbury, where Dr. King worshiped, said it’s an honor to have The Embrace as part of the fabric of Boston.

“To have the emblem of one who came through our church and was a part of our family for some time is just an amazing reminder,” Rev. Dr. Willie Bodrick II said. “I’m also excited because Coretta Scott King is going to be remembered and in doing that great work we know we have an opportunity to put in the Common a symbol to remind us of who we can be as a city and what work we have to do.”

You can watch special coverage of the unveiling of The Embrace on NBC10 Boston from 12 to 3 p.m. Friday.

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