$8,000 clean up project begins on Castleman statue

$8,000 clean up project begins on Castleman statue

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) – Clean up began Monday on the John B. Castleman Monument in the Cherokee Triangle Neighborhood.

It's a contentious statue that was vandalized on Aug 13. Someone threw orange paint on the statue now the city will have to pay $8,200 to clean it up.

"We are following the standard procedure that we would for any art work in the city's collection," Sarah Lindgren said. "Part of that reason is that it doesn't look good to have paint on the monument."

Lindgren is a part of the City's Commission on Public Art. They were tasked with identifying all the public art in the city that could be perceived as honoring racism or slavery.

A public meeting will be held at the Old Jail Building Auditorium on Liberty Street on September 6th. There, citizens can voice their opinions on the 400 pieces of art around Louisville.

Scott  Boyer, Co-owner of Falls Art Foundry and his team are removing oil paint from the bronze statue.

"I haven't seen that much vandalism," Scott Boyer said, "This is by far the worst I have seen."

The vandalism happened hours after the August 12th clashes in Charlottesville Virginia.

"We are just trying to remove the paint in as gentle of way as we can," Boyer said.

The conservators are using nonabrasive tools to chip away the paint by hand.Their goal is to minimize the amount of harsh chemicals used in the project.

"We expected people driving by to express their thoughts," Matt Weir said. "They have been and it is mostly gratitude."

Since the protest in Charlottesville, groups have demonstrated around the Castleman Statue calling for its removal.

Kate Sedgwick is on the leadership team of Showing Up for Racial Justice and says the statue honors racism.

"These statues fail completely on a moral level and there is a national call to work to remove them," Sedgwick said. "I think that it's more appropriate to be in a museum and not a public park."

The city owns hundreds of pieces of art and whether or they stay in public places, the city said its goal is to preserve them.
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