Mural paying homage to the late rapper Nipsey Hussle unveiled in Oakland

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A larger-than-life mural of Nipsey Hussle peers out from a brick wall in Oakland, an homage to the late Los Angeles rapper. 

The painting, showing Hussle with iconic Southern California palm trees in the background was painted on the side of Grand Express, a black-owned convenience store on the north side of Lake Merritt.

Oakland artists Timothy Bluitt Jr. and Natty Rebel, director of the Bay Area Mural Program, wanted to honor the LA rapper in Oakland because he inspired people to give back to their communities. 

"I felt like there is a need to bridge the gap between Oakland and Los Angeles," Bluitt told SF Gate. "Being in LA doesn't mean [Hussle's] life was any different from a lot of those who came from the streets out here in Oakland. We have a similar struggle and understanding of what it takes to survive out here in America." 

Their work was supported by the Darryl Reed Foundation.

The mural will be officially unveiled on Friday with a party at Grand Express from 5 to 7 p.m. to celebrate.