As the city of Yonkers decides how to memorialize its hometown hero DMX, an artist from Long Island, NY is taking matters into his own hands. Like many others, Efren Andaluz was hurt by the death of DMX. When the rapper passed away Friday (April 9), Andaluz paid his respects in an Instagram post and made an interesting offer.
“This one really hurts,” he wrote beneath a black-and-white photo of X praying. “I truly believed he would make it through this. X was the voice of my childhood and was my favorite rapper in his prime. Demons are real. They see the light God shines on you and try to keep you in the dark. May Jesus shine on you for eternity big homie.”
“I’m looking for a wall near the Bronx or Yonkers to pay my respect to this legend,” Andaluz added. “The mural is on me.”
Thankfully, the artist whose painted murals of Mac Miller, Anthony Bourdain and Kobe Bryant plus dozens of celebrity portraits, has found a location for his DMX tribute.
On Tuesday (April 13) AndaluzTheArtist is planning to paint a DMX mural outside of La Estrella Tropical restaurant in Bronx, NY and he’ll be, “bumping X all day long.” The three-hour event is slated to begin at 3 p.m. and end at 6 p.m.
The idea for the DMX mural came to Andaluz when he first found out the rapper was in the hospital. “I was headed to Yonkers trying to find a wall when I heard the news,” Andaluz tells REVOLT. “I really love DMX and this is who I am.”
Andaluz wanted to paint his DMX tribute on School St. where X grew up, but unfortunately the neighborhood didn’t have any adequate spaces. The walls were breaking down and would need to be restored before Andaluz could paint over them. He needed a new location. “I wanted it to be in a place with a lot of people where they can enjoy the mural,” Andaluz says. A local NYC graffiti artist noticed his offer on Instagram and reached out to him, suggesting he put his artwork on the side of a restaurant in the Bronx. The owner, who happens to be a member of the Ruff Ryders, was happy to provide a home for Andaluz’ art.
The 34-year-old artist’s mural will be among the first of many memorials expected to pop-up throughout the city of New York and X’s hometown Yonkers. Andaluz plans to use spray paint for the picture and paint brushes to touch-up details. He already knows which photo he will recreate as well. He’s sketched a design but is contemplating whether the image will be in black-and-white or in color. “I want to do a portrait of him, from his shoulders up and I want to make it really big,” he says. “The most impactful murals are the ones where you can capture the person’s face and look into their eyes and feel what the person was feeling.”
“I know Tuesday is going to be crazy and its going to be a tribute to the life of DMX,” Andaluz adds. “I hope this wall heals some broken hearts because I know a lot of people are feeling this loss.”