Many have heard that the Triumph of Civic Virtue statue was recently scheduled to be sold to Green-Wood Cemetery in Brooklyn.
This is not in fact the case. We received an e-mail from the Department of Citywide Administrative Services as follows:
Please be advised that the Department of Citywide Administrative Services (DCAS) is currently looking into conservation options for the statue. The City, as a policy, does not decommission or sell works of art. While no decision has been made at this point, DCAS understands the significance of this piece of art, and will work diligently towards an appropriate resolution.
Although this is a welcomed change of news from earlier stories this summer about the clandestine sale to the Green-Wood cemetery, it is far from a promise that decisions about the statue’s future will stop happening under bureaucratic obscurity.
One of the more recent pieces of coverage in the mainstream media can be found in the Wall Street Journal.
Note the comments of councilwoman Ferreras:
“For me, it’s a relief if the statue is being removed,” she said. “I think the cemetery is where it belongs. I guess, pun intended, it’s a dead issue for all the women of Queens who had to see it on a daily basis.”
“For me, it’s a relief” – This is not the language of a councilwoman working in the interest of the public; it evokes the satisfaction of a personal grudge, perhaps calculated to bring attention to the Committee on Women’s Issues she chairs.
With the many problems the women of Queens face day to day, is doubtful that the mislabeled sexism of the statue is anywhere on their radar. We would like to see Ferreras direct her efforts to genuinely pressing issues for women. None of the residents of Kew Gardens were eligible to vote on councilwoman Ferreras’ seat, and it is difficult to justify why she is trying to alter the character of a neighborhood outside of her district. Anthony Weiner continues (wisely) to keep his voice out of the media on this issue.
If you feel that the neighborhood of Kew Gardens deserves not to be harried by political meddling to remove its public art, click here to find out what can be done.