FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) – A controversial portrait of Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott that lit a fire on social media is back up again but this time in a different spot.
Arlington-native and muralist Trey Wilder is putting the finishing touches on an exhibit that’s opening to the public this weekend inside Ridgmar Mall in Fort Worth.
Wilder said he’s been planning the exhibit for some time, but he didn’t plan, until recently, to include a replica of his original crying Prescott mural in the collection.
“For those who didn’t get to see it before it was vandalized, I wanted those people to come and experience it,” said Wilder.
His first version of the controversial portrait was defaced in Dallas earlier in August after it went up. The piece of art depicts the Cowboys quarterback wide-eyed with a tear in his eye. It’s an image inspired by the movie “Get Out” and a scene that delivers a powerful message about social equality for African-Americans.
“This was just my interpretation of Dak’s speaking to the public at the time he did,” said Wilder.
The mural is Wilder’s veiled social commentary following Prescott’s public message that he won’t kneel during the National Anthem at NFL games.
“I just want to elicit some emotions, and then maybe, if I could start a conversation, that would be my purpose,” said Wilder.
The artist admitted he didn’t expect his work to gain the kind of wide and mixed reaction it has gotten.
“A lot of love, and, of course, then you have to have the haters too,” said Wilder.
He’s welcoming everyone to check out the mural again, and he isn’t expecting this one will be vandalized.
“I didn’t really take that to heart. Now, if they mess this one up, I’m going to be like, ‘Alright now,'” said Wilder.
The exhibit opens Saturday evening at Ridgmar Mall, and it will be free and open to the public.