Martin Luther King Jr statue by Jamaican Basil Watson unveiled in Atlanta

The city of Atlanta, Georgia welcomed a statue of civil rights icon Martin Luther King Jr created by famed Jamaican sculptor Basil Watson.

Jamaican-born sculptor Basil Watson in front his Martin Luther King Jr creation.

The statue was unveiled to commemorate Martin Luther King Jr Day in the United States which is also a celebration of the birthday of the Baptist minister.

The commemorative statue, entitled “Hope Moving Forward”, is the first of seven art installations that have been commissioned by the city as part of their MLK Innovation Corridor Project.

Watson, a distinguished sculptor in his own right, was selected out of 80 applicants to create the statue following a call for submissions in 2018.

The bronze statue depicts Dr King holding a dove and is located at the intersection of Northside Drive and Martin Luther King Jr Drive in the city.

Among those praising his effort is Prime Minister of Jamaica, Andrew Holness, who congratulated Watson on his achievement. For his part, Watson said he wanted to frame his effort in the key messages that Dr King shared with the world.

Watson is known for other works including the recent installation of statues of Jamaican athletes at the National Stadium including Usain Bolt, Shelly Ann Fraser-Pryce, Asafa Powell and Veronica Campbell- Brown.