A Display of the Power of Public Artworks
Re “Protest Over Art Forces Police to Draw the Line,” May 15: Joseph Turner should pick his fights more carefully. Targeting the Baldwin Park Metrolink public artwork makes a laughingstock of him and his group, Save Our State. Failing to understand the origin of the quote he labels seditious, he opens himself to ridicule and being labeled a racist. His comments and attitude make me wonder if the protest against the arch wasn’t really just a publicity stunt. This group would be better served if Turner were to direct his attention to the substantive issues surrounding illegal immigration.
“Art is not a mirror to reflect reality, but a hammer with which to shape it”: Bertolt Brecht.
Judy Baca’s public artwork provides a model for the community-based reclaiming of sites of memory. “Danza Indigenas” actively remembers not only the indigenous peoples of this land but also the historical context of conquest that was ultimately about the erasure of histories. The power of Baca’s public art production and community-based process is evident by the vision it inspires for social change. I’m witness to this power, and it has shaped my reality.