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  • Erica Ponder

Meet the Artist: Installation inspired by movie ‘Do the Right Thing’ encourages dialogue, celebratio

HOUSTON — Art is oftentimes our escape to a perfect world, our opportunity to tell a story in our own way, and our outlet to create a better tomorrow. Muralist and Louisiana native Thaddaeus J. Arvie has created an installation at the popular Bar 5015 that has been so captivating, he has to talk about it.

In honor of the installation inspired by the Spike Lee movie Do the Right Thing, Bar 5015 owner and businessman Steve Rogers created an event that celebrated the Houston art community while spreading the message of “More Love and Less Hate.” Hostess and media personality Totally Randie (Houston Style Magazine and It’s National Day) facilitated a dialogue about what that movement means and how we can inspire the community to create more love, especially during a time of uncertainty for many.

Spike Lee’s legendary Do the Right Thing was released in 1989 and has been considered a culturally significant film as it chronicles race relations, police brutality, and colorism in the black community. Although the movie was released nearly 30 years ago, not much has changed since then.

“Out of respect for one of the greatest Black filmmakers, I wanted to create a signature wall that not only pays homage to Spike Lee’s revolutionary creative mind, but also to honor all those who have been killed by the police,” Arvie wrote in his dedication for the installation.

Get to Know the Artist

Arvie was actually inspired by the lack of representation of artists like himself in the industry, encouraging him to want to give back as he grows in his gift and profession. He believes art inspires people by how we subconsciously take in the message within the images. Subtle things that Arvie included in his installment were chronological details from the movie in the fence of the project. “I wanted to see how the movie invoked their feelings,” he explained. “You start off on a normal day and then it ends up being this chaotic day. Which is kind of how this whole year felt.”

Photo Credit: La’Torria Lemon Erica Ponder interviews artist Thaddaeus Arvie

Arvie has been an artist since he can remember, but started off creating installations with a good friend and founder of the Culture Experience in Atlanta, Georgia (formerly Booked HTX). The Grambling State University graduate is finally starting to tap into art full time and looks to do more installations in the future.

Arvie wants other artists to know that their role may feel small, but their impact is big.

“It does matter. People do notice. Even if it’s just one or two, that should be enough,” he said.

To keep up with Thaddaeus and his insanely good artwork, go to or follow him on Instagram @thaddaeus_thecreator.

Photo Credit: Totally Randie

Photo Credit: Totally Randie


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