"Like a caterpillar that transitions into a beautiful butterfly, this project has transformed this corner, the gateway to Port Richmond and its diverse community, into a work of art."
I was proud to welcome City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito to Staten Island for the unveiling of Mariposas Amarillas, a mural made up of 18,000 plastic yellow butterflies and 10,000 blue plastic cups affixed to a fence at Richmond Terrace and Jewitt Avenue. Butterflies migrate thousands of miles, a reminder to us that migration can be natural, fluid and peaceful. Butterflies also undergo tremendous change in their first month of life, a reminder that our communities are constantly changing, with immigrants bringing their own flavors, gifts and cultures. I hope we all embrace this change the way a butterfly embraces its change.
Many thanks to artist Lina Montoya and the 100 volunteers who helped her tie each butterfly to the fence. Lina's vision has beautified this space, which I see often on my commute. Thank you also to the city's Department of Transportation and El Centro del Inmigrante for making this possible.