Butterflies are a powerful symbol of transformation and have the ability to make an impact with just a flap of one’s wings. They are beauty incarnate, symbolizing all the good things that humanity can picture, while reminding us that life is fragile and that human dignity is delicate.

But more compelling and more critical is the butterfly’s role as a potent symbol of hope, telegraphing humanity’s potential in a simple, elegant idea.

Over the course of 20 years, The Butterfly Project has fired the imagination of millions of people and has resulted in the creation of more than 1.5 million stunning butterflies, handmade in every conceivable material, color and form.

Remember us, for we were the children whose dreams and lives were stolen away.

Created by children across the globe, the butterflies evoke powerful emotion. They create a chain reaction that changes the way people feel, then challenges the way they think and finally, inspires them to act.

Kicking off at Neiman Marcus in the Galleria, the butterflies are now bringing their message of hope to locations throughout Houston in honor of the 20th anniversary of the Project. A selection of those inspiring creations is now on display at the Museum in one of the most important art exhibitions ever displayed as part of “Taking Flight: The Butterfly Project.” The exhibit will remain on view through July 31, 2016.

While the physical butterflies will be in Houston at this time, the message is universal and it’s global: Humanity is at a turning point, one where we have to choose hope or hate. The Project exists to show the potential our future can hold if we focus on our commonalities and celebrate our differences.

In addition to the tour, the Museum has produced a beautiful coffee table book commemorating 100 of the most imaginative, powerful butterflies submitted. The Butterfly Project is available for purchase at the Museum Store or online at hmh.org.