During the final year of the Obama administration, people throughout the nation offered unique tributes to the first family. One Ethiopian student in New York used her digital art skills to create an African-inspired portrait of Michelle Obama.
In addition to creating the mural based on Mesfin's work, Devins raised nearly $12,000 on a GoFundMe page for its installation.
Soon after Devins' mural was featured in several media outlets without mentioning Mesfin, word got back to the New York artist that someone may have stolen her work.
Eventually, Mesfin posted a response to the attention Devins' mural in Chicago received.
In her post, Mesfin said seeing her work uncredited as a mural was "so disheartening and so disrespectful on so many levels."
However, Devins also took to his own social media pages to defend his work and explain about how he chooses which pieces to use for his murals.
"As an urban planner I make no claims on any of the images I do, a fool can see that I use public domain images a lot," Devins wrote on his Facebook page. "Im urban planning. Now , it does turn out that the way I take whole sets of images, re-mix them and re-present them as a way to connect buildings to the community may be in itself a new form of Art, like an image DJ."
Devins posted to his Twitter that he can't wait to work with Mesfin in order to better the youth of Chicago.
No official statement has been made about what the two are planning; however, it does appear there is nothing but love between the two lovers of art.
(Photo: Chris Devins via Instagram)
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