Warning: Immediate spoilers ahead...
It’s hard to believe that nearly a year ago we lost the adorable, hooch-making Poussey Washington in a senseless tragedy at Litchfield Penitentiary. It’s also hard to remember that Poussey was a fictional character on Netflix’s Orange Is the New Black, played by the convincing Samira Wiley. In season 4 we witnessed the beloved character take her last breath in a scene that was triggering to say the least.
For many OITNB fans, Netflix was, for the time, the object of our ire. After months of mentally preparing for the inevitable void of her absence on the series, Netflix decided to troll our heartstrings. According to Hello Giggles, the company commissioned several artists around the world to create murals dedicated to our dearly departed Poussey. The murals also say, “Stand Up.”
Artist from New York, Chicago, Melbourne, Sydney, Los Angeles, Toronto, and San Francisco honored the character through vibrant colors and boldly designed art for passersby.
Wiley also commented about the murals. "I think it's our responsibility as artists to be able to reflect the time that we're living in. She's a fictional character that can elicit real change in thought and action from people,” Wiley said in an interview with the Associated Press.
Michelle Tanguay who painted a striking mural of Poussey in shades of black and grey also commented to the AP. “To see an African-American woman on the wall in Detroit, blown up huge, with the words ‘Stand Up’ — it’s just so empowering, and that’s what I wanted everyone to feel when they see the mural.”
Check out season 5 of Orange Is the New Black, on June 9. Despite Poussey being long gone, fans of Wiley can now catch her in Hulu’s newest series, The Handmaid’s Tale, which debuted on Wednesday.