Letter: Could local Black artists ‘Advance Asheville’?

ADVANCE ASHEVILLE: Shealy Thompson drew this image to suggest how the Vance Monument could be redesigned.

I found Councilwoman Sandra Kilgore’s argument for repurposing the Vance Monument quite compelling [“Full Circle: Can Repurposing the Vance Monument Help Heal the Divide in Asheville?” Jan. 27, Xpress]. Hiding history only tempts us to repeat it.

I also liked a suggestion in the Xpress a while back that we rename it as “Advance Asheville,” and that gave me an idea. I would love to see us hire some of our very talented local Black artists or sculptors to redesign the monument.

The image that came to me is of people helping each other to climb up the structure, some standing on the shoulders of others and finally reaching its peak. Such an image could help remind us of where we’ve come from, how joint efforts have moved us forward and how much work we still need to do to heal.

— Shealy Thompson


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One thought on “Letter: Could local Black artists ‘Advance Asheville’?

  1. James

    If a group wanted to “repurpose” the Statue of Liberty, would people call it by another name and forget its original purpose and intent? ESPECIALLY the people who in this case celebrate the treason and racism that the Vance monument was intended to honor and glorify? While we’re at it, should we bring back the “Whites Only” bathroom and water fountain signs so we aren’t “hiding history” and don’t become tempted to “repeat it?”

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