Breonna Taylor‘s likeness and image have been kept alive and circulating widely on t-shirts and on murals thanks to the striking portrait by famed artist Amy Sherald.
On Friday, Taylor’s famous portrait that graced the cover of the September 2020 issue of Vanity Fair will now hang in the National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC), which is part of the Smithsonian, in a new exhibition called “Reckoning: Protest. Defiance. Resilience.”
The graceful portrait, which is now co-owned by the NMAAHC in Washington, D.C. and The Speed Museum in Louisville, Kentucky, depicts Taylor in a flowing turquoise gown, beaming with statuesque beauty and an engagement ring on her finger — a nod to the married life that was to come before her life was tragically cut short.
Taylor and her boyfriend Kenneth Walker were home laying in bed when plainclothes police officers executed a search warrant and forced their way into the apartment, BBC reports. Authorities claimed an officer was struck in the leg by a bullet from Walker’s gun. Three officers returned fire and discharged 32 rounds, FBI ballistics report said. Taylor was caught in the crossfire and died on her hallway floor.
“I am honored and proud of the work the museum has accomplished over the past five years to share African American history and culture with the world,” said Kevin Young, the Andrew W. Mellon director of the National Museum of African American History and Culture.
This the the fifth anniversary of the opening of the Smithsonian. It also partnered with Smithsonian Folkways Recordings to produce the Smithsonian Anthology of Hip-Hop and Rap. The eclectic project was released on Aug. 20.
Taylor’s display is part of the the Black Lives Matter movement installation.
“Our anniversary theme, ‘Living History,’ aptly captures the current moment and our mission — and inspires many of our efforts this year. Connecting the past to the present and the future is a hallmark of our work.”