Work, this time. But I’m back now. Hopefully folks didn’t miss me too much.
I have a lot of posts floating around in my head right now, but not sure which one I want to work on first. However, I did want to share something with you all before I forgot about it:
AP Photo/Phil Coale
When artist John Sims sees the Confederate flag, he sees “visual terrorism,” and a symbol of a racist past. When Robert Hurst sees the flag, he is filled with pride as the descendant of a soldier who fought for the South during the Civil War.
Their differences have flared into a war of words, catching a local museum in the middle.
Hurst walked into the Mary Brogan Museum of Art and Science this past week and saw an exhibit by Sims, including a Confederate flag hung from a noose on a 13-foot gallows in a display titled “The Proper Way to Hang a Confederate Flag.”
Hurst asked the museum to remove the display, along with 13 other pieces by Sims.
The museum, however, announced Friday it is standing by Sims’ work, on display since Feb. 26, because it wants to inspire dialogue in the community about a symbol that engenders a diversity of strong responses.
The very first paragraph in that is the most important bit, I think. People on both sides of this issue have such strong reactions to this symbol, but they are so, so vastly different. That’s why I really like this piece of art. Not because it reflects a POV I agree with, but because it smacks everyone in the face with the question: What Does This Flag Mean To You and Why?
I would have preferred the piece to be untitled, or at least have a title that does not reflect a clear bias on anti-Confederate flag because I really think that art can be both neutral and partial at once. And it allows for so many other questions and discussions. How would you feel if that was an American flag instead and the artist was Iraqi or Afghani or Saudi? Or even if it was the scary Burger King doll-man and the artist was an obese person? I mean, there is so much going on here, so much more than just “The South Sucks”. I want discussions to reflect that.