Brunswick artist hopes Ahmaud Arbery mural will help create change

BRUNSWICK, Ga. — An African American artist who returned to his hometown of Brunswick is using art to create change.

Marvin Weeks completed a mural of Ahmaud Arbery in May of 2020. It’s located just a few blocks from the Glynn County Courthouse.

Weeks painted it last year on Albany Street on an old building that is now the new home of the Brunswick African American Cultural Center.

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It took him 10 days to finish and if you look closer, you’ll notice the shells representing the coastal Georgia community that Arbery is from.

“Right now, art is across the country with every community. Art is really telling our stories,” Weeks said.

Although he’s lived in Miami for decades, he came back to his hometown of Brunswick to cement Arbery’s image forever in Brunswick history.

Weeks remembers growing up in this historic community where he says a lot of the same racial tension he experienced hasn’t gone away.

Father and son Gregory and Travis McMichael are both on trial for murder charges after video showed them chasing Arbery with their pickup truck and killing him.

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“When I was a child in this community, the pickup truck was a symbol of someone coming to harm you, you know, and I grew up with that as child,” Weeks said.

Now, when people pass by his artwork, Weeks hopes they take a good look and really take notice of what’s happening around them.

“It’s like a woman being abused and for years she keeps quiet, and she doesn’t tell anyone in the family, so this is a big problem and they need to sit down at the table and deal with the issues.”

Weeks is also creating another project here in Brunswick at the intersection of G and Albany Street that will help highlight Brunswick’s rich history.