A mural is being painted on a wall at North Mount and Presbury streets in Baltimore, the scene of Freddie Gray's arrest. (Tim Smith/Baltimore Sun)

The long, blank white wall on the side of a row house at the intersection where Freddie Gray was arrested is gradually being filled with a mural by street artist Justin Nethercut, who started on the project Sunday night to commemorate the young man whose death stirred days of unrest in Baltimore.

The large-scale, three-section mural at the corner of North Mount and Presbury streets has an image of Gray in the center; much of that image had been painted in by Monday afternoon.


On the left side is the outline of a scene depicting the civil rights marches of the past; the figure of Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., is visible in the group. The outline on the right side is of a scene evoking the marches in Baltimore over the past week protesting the arrest and death of Gray.

The artist, who goes by the name Nether, said that it would likely take the rest of the week to finish painting the mural. He declined to comment further.

On his Instagram page, Nether said the project "is gearing up to be the heaviest and most important wall of my life" and described the mural as "a collaborative idea" with Gray's brother, Brandon.

"I think it's something that needs to be expressed," said Harold Perry, who gave permission for the painting of the mural on the exterior wall of his Presbury Street home.

"The [mural] shows the history from Martin Luther King to today. Freddie's picture represents one of the young black men who has been abused by police all over the country. Right now is his time to bring attention to what's going on," said Perry, who turns 74 on Tuesday.

A couple of neighbors also near the mural site also expressed support for the project.

"It's part of construction, not deconstruction," said Robert F. Sellers, 80. "No one will have complaints about it. It helps build the neighborhood up. We've got to get people back together again, to learn to live among one another."

The mural "protects Freddie's memory," said Jernita Stackhouse, 51. "It's great."