BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) — Congressman Garret Graves unveiled the official theme for the 2022 Washington Mardi Gras –“Louisiana: America’s Foreign Country.”

“The theme is ‘America’s Foreign Country’, but the implied tone is unity — especially after our collective experiences these past two years,” said Graves. “ The Mardi Gras float exemplifies that archetype of Louisiana’s multicultural heritage. But the many hands, of many colors, reaching for that iconic necklace of beads, are not just lifted up in joy, but almost outstretched in praise. It’s kinda like they’re all saying, ‘Yeah, we need this.’ And the Louisiana in Joe’s painting is the only place on earth where they’ll get this salvation.”

New Orleans artist Joe Mustachia was chosen by Graves to create the poster based on the theme.

“Mardi Gras is an iconic part of the Louisiana experience, inspiring and touching people from all walks of life,” said Mustachia about his painting. “I wanted to capture the vibrant color, positive energy and unique atmosphere that makes Mardi Gras and our state so special.”

Washington Mardi Gras, a tradition organized by the Mystick Krewe of Louisianans, has existed for over 60 years. This year’s celebration takes place from Jan. 27-29 at the Washington Hilton Hotel.

According to Graves, each krewe member will receive a number poster print signed by Mustachia and a ducal lapel pin designed by the artist.