New York sculpture honours ‘strength and bravery’ of transgender community by giving them wings

An artist in New York has honoured the transgender community with a wing-like sculpture in Tribeca Park, Lower Manhattan.

Artist Rubem Robierb made the 10-foot-high, 13-feet-wide pair of pearly white wings out of fibreglass, on top of a steel and concrete base, “in tribute to [the transgender community’s] strength and bravery”.

The sculpture is the latest in Robierb’s series of public sculptures, Dream Machine.

“Place yourself between the wings, close your eyes and make a wish,” said Robierb. “Imagine yourself traveling to the place where your dreams will come true. This is a monument to the dreamers, for we are the ones who live and die making the impossible happen.”

The unveiling of the New York sculpture honouring the transgender community – which is titled “Dandara” for a trans woman in Brazil called Dandara dos Santos who was murdered in 2017 – was attended by members of the LGBT+ community, artists, gallery owners and social-media influencers.

“In tribute to the strength and bravery of the Trans GNC Community, Dandara has an important message and meaning, ” Robierb said. “And I felt that New York City was a place to showcase this on a public scale.”

Peppermint, a former RuPaul’s Drag race contestant and trans activist, spoke at the unveiling of the sculpture.

“Hopefully,” Peppermint told WABC-TV, “this will be the beginning of other queer people, trans people, trans young girls, and gender non-conforming people, to have a space where they can come, and know that their dreams can be realised.”

In the US, at least 21 trans people have been killed in 2019, 20 of whom were trans women of colour.

Their names are Dana MartinJazzaline WareAshanti CarmonClaire LegatoMuhlaysia BookerMichelle WashingtonParis CameronChynal LindseyChanel ScurlockZoe SpearsBrooklyn LindseyDenali Berries StuckeyKiki Fantroy and Pebbles LaDime DoeTracy SingleBailey ReevesBee Love SlaterElisha Stanley Itali Marlowe and Brianna Hill.

Alicia Simmons, a black trans woman who was found dead in her apartment on Sunday night, may be the 22nd.