El Paso Settles with Local Artist; Art Still Hideous
The City Council has reached terms with local artist Margarita Cabrera. The parties had been at odds over an art project titled Uplift. City officials say the sculpture was removed just hours after it was installed at the traffic round-about on Country Club Road.
Now, I'm going to include my own expert art criticism here because, as a person who would sometimes ride my bike down that stretch of Country Club while it was still closed to traffic, I'm one of the few people who actually saw Uplift in its completed state. The city claims they took the sculpture down because neighbors had "complained that guns were depicted in the artwork."
I got off my bike and took a really close look, trying to figure out what this monstrous eyesore was, and why it had suddenly been plopped down in my 'hood. I didn't notice any "guns" but I think I noticed the thing that the neighbors were actually complaining about. Specifically, that it was ugly. Take a look at this fecal-storm:
That looks like the T. Rex skeleton at the museum was rearranged by spiteful poltergeists. This isn't just an annoying-level eyesore. This is the kind of neighborhood blight that can drive real estate prices down and I don't blame the locals for wanting it gone. It looks like a dumping ground for tacky yard ornaments.
I'm fairly convinced that this dispute has nothing to do with the guns that were used in the project and everything to do with not wanting a crappy second-grade paper mache project in the middle of the road of one of the wealthiest zip codes in the city. Who knows? Maybe the city was trying to spare the artist's feelings. Maybe they didn't have the heart to tell her she made a hideous hunk of scrap metal so they concocted this "we don't like the use of guns" narrative to avoid being discourteous.
Well, maybe they should have just nutted up and admitted the truth because after months of legal wrangling, the city has agreed to let Cabrera keep the money she was paid and to pay some of her attorney's fees.
Oh, and Uplift is going to be reinstalled in the center of the roundabout making it not only an eyesore, but now also a traffic hazard. Nice job, guys.