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July 31st, 2010
12:14 PM ET

Slave Trade Sculptures: Art to remember the past

Twenty-seven year-old artist, Stephen Hayes, in Atlanta, just learned about the how slaves were brought from Africa to the U.S. He was stunned.

He never learned about the Brookes slave ship plan in all his years of schooling. He had no idea slaves were packed as tightly as possible in the ships, and sick "cargo" were simply tossed out to the Atlantic. This horrified him and he wanted to share this story with others because he was never told about this part of U.S. history.

For five months he worked tirelessly to create a stunning piece of artwork: 15 life size statues of former slaves, to represent 15 million slaves that were transported to the New World. He hopes his art will start a dialogue about our past and inspire us to change the present and future.

Hayes says slavery exists today: in sweatshops in under developed countries.