Street art of Nipsey Hussle in LA breathes life into legacy – Daily News

on Apr25
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By JONATHAN LANDRUM Jr.AP Entertainment Writer

LOS ANGELES — Along busy highways, on the sides of buildings and inside a school basketball court, more than 50 colorful murals of Nipsey Hussle have popped up in Los Angeles since the beloved rapper and community activist was gunned down outside his clothing store.

Some show the rapper gazing into the sky or bowing his head. One has him standing with angel wings. Others include inspiring quotes. The street artists who created the work said they want his legacy to grow and his entrepreneurial spirit to live on.

“He wasn’t the biggest star, but I knew his music. His passing led me to rediscover him under a completely new light,” said Levi Ponce, who created an elaborate blue, black and white mural on 26-foot-building with Hussle’s image in one day. A lyric from his song “Victory Lap” was written above his head.

Hussle was fatally shot on March 31 while standing outside The Marathon, his South Los Angeles clothing store, not far from where he was raised.

“As a muralist, my philosophy is that we can do our part today with what we have now,” Ponce said. “In my case, I’m a painter and paint in the streets. Nipsey was able to give it on a greater scale. He went out of his way to help the community. For me, that’s motivation and inspiration. So I had to get my paint on the walls right away after hearing the sad news.”

Eric R. Holder Jr., who has been charged with killing Hussle, has pleaded not guilty. Police have said Holder and Hussle had several interactions the day of the shooting and have described it as being the result of a personal dispute.

The death of the 33-year-old Hussle sent a shock wave through the hip-hop community and beyond. Fans poured out adoration for a man whose career hit new heights with “Victory Lap,” his first studio album that earned a Grammy nomination after he released much sought-after mi

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