After the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Coretta Scott King memorial in Boston was erected, there was immediate backlash.
The “The Embrace” statue, which is 20 feet tall and 40 feet wide, was unveiled on Friday on Boston Common, the site of King’s speech to 22,000 people on April 23, 1965. A picture of King and Scott King cuddling after he received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1964 served as the model for the monument.
Hank Willis Thomas, a conceptual artist from Brooklyn, created the sculpture, which has drawn criticism and jeers online since it only depicts the couple’s arms during their hug and not their heads. While some people uploaded memes and suggested it looked like a sex act, others called it disgusting or insulting.
Scott King’s cousin Seneca Scott, a community activist in Oakland, California, told newusanews that the monument was offensive to his family. In a previous piece for Compact Magazine, he called it a “masturbatory metal tribute.”
“If you can see it from all sides, it’s four hands, and it’s probably two individuals hugging each other. The tragedy that other people focus on isn’t the missing heads; rather, it’s a stump that resembled a penis. I’m kidding,” Scott said to newusanews.
However, Martin Luther King III stated on Monday that he was happy to be able to witness a statue honouring the union and love of his parents. While some individuals have unfavourable views towards the monument
King stated, “I think that’s a significant expression of bringing people together. “The artist performed a terrific job, in my opinion. I’m content. Yes, it was missing my parents’ pictures, but it still stands for something positive that unites people.
And since there is so much separation in this day and age, he continued, “we need symbols that speak of uniting us.”
Thomas has been contacted by newusanews for comment over the response to “The Embrace.” Thomas stated earlier this month in his email that the sculpture was “a testament to love and the power it contains,” in addition to being a memorial to King and Scott King.
A spokeswoman for Embrace Boston, the nonprofit organisation dedicated to racial and economic justice that was responsible for the monument’s installation, declined to respond to the criticism and instead referred to King III’s remarks.
The memorial’s mission statement reads, “The Embrace is designed to inspire visitors to think on the ideas of racial and economic fairness that both Kings preached.”
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