Louisville Mayor in national spotlight for public art review

Mayor Fischer gets national attention for public art review

LOUISVILLE (WHAS11) -- Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer is in the national spotlight after calling for a review of all public art.

His request for the review comes as some call for Confederate statues to come down around Louisville in the aftermath of the violence in Charlottesville, Va.

Fischer appeared on CBS This Morning on Monday, pushing the conversation to talk about what is history and what may be offensive to some.

The mayor called for the Louisville Commission on Public Art to review its catalog.

“To identify any piece of public art that has any potential connotation of slavery or racism to it so we can discuss each and every one of them and put them in their proper context,” said Fischer.

Fischer says he plans to hold a community conversation about some of the public art that can be interpreted to be honoring bigotry, racism and/or slavery. His decision comes after a bronze monument was spray painted orange in the heart of the Highlands over the weekend.  It's a statue of John Breckenridge Castleman, a Kentucky native and Confederate officer during the Civil War.

Some people who live in the Highlands were not happy to wake up to the vandalism on Sunday.

“Disappointed, shocked a bit because I really didn't think we'd see this kind of vandalism,” says Ann Mcbride, who lives near the statue.

“It doesn't wipe away hate it just creates more hate,” said Don Harris who lives nearby.

The orange paint still remains on the monument because city crews want to be careful not to damage the bronze even more.

https://louisvilleky.gov/government/public-art/public-art-review

While condemning the violence in Virginia, Mayor Fischer called on everyone to work together for peace.

“The strength of America is our human values, that's what we should be celebrating every day, diversity is what makes us strong,” said Fischer.

The group Standing Up for Racial Justice is planning to gather at the statue Monday night to push for its removal. The event is set for 6 p.m.

There's also a petition circling on change.org that calls for the removal of the statue. It has more than 700 signatures.

 

© 2017 WHAS-TV


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