Boston welcomes The Embrace memorial

Friday, Jan. 13 marks the official unveiling of the new monument to Martin Luther King Jr.

Bronze sculpture on Boston Common

Add seeing this new monument to your winter bucket list.

Photo by @bretclancy

Today’s the day. Community leaders will officially unveil “The Embrace,” a historic monument to racial justice, this afternoon at the Boston Common.

The sculpture honors Coretta Scott King and Martin Luther King Jr. Embrace Boston, the Boston Foundation program behind the memorial, hopes to spark a city-wide conversation on advancing racial and social justice in Boston.

The two-story high memorial is making history as one of the largest racial equity memorials in the country. Located between the Visitor’s Center + Parkman Bandstand, this bronze sculpture is pretty unmissable at 22 ft high and 40 ft wide.

The design from internationally acclaimed conceptual artist Hank Willis Thomas + MASS Design Group was chosen in 2018 from a total of 126 project submissions.

Wondering about the meaning of the intertwined arms? They represent the Kings’ embrace when they first learned that Dr. King won the Nobel Peace Prize. It’s designed to make visitors feel like they are standing in the center of the hug.

“The Embrace” is located just steps away from where Dr. King addressed a crowd of 22,000 people in 1965 after walking with them from Roxbury to the Common. That’s not the couple’s only Boston tie — Dr. King received a PhD in systematic theology from Boston University, and Coretta Scott King earned a degree in music education from the New England Conservatory.

To see the memorial for yourself, stop by today at 1 p.m. for the official unveiling ceremony. If you can’t make it, don’t worry. There will be an NBC 10 livestream from 12 to 3 p.m.

Plus, Bostonians will be able to clearly view the sculpture in early February once the construction fencing is taken down.

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