This mural is intended to explore the notion of Abraham Lincoln as a figurehead for ending slavery and starting equal rights. Within this theme is the idea that although Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation and later, with Congress, passed the 13th Amendment abolishing all slavery it was the effort of countless abolitionists and civil rights advocates who created the atmosphere where abolition could be considered and enacted.
The composition of the mural is divided into three parts as designated by the scaffolding that supports the giant statue. The workers help to construct the “Colossal Lincoln” but also act out an allegory of the people’s struggle to end slavery and form equal rights. Lightness and darkness, through chiaroscuro effects, also help in illuminating the idea of people struggling for higher, more enlightened ideals the closer they are to the top of the mural. The use of color is important with the surrounding background and scaffolding planks being relatively muted. To contrast this, the light that floods into the scene will brighten and saturate up the images. The figures are painted with more saturated blues and reds that push forward from the background.