What’s next for Charlottesville’s ‘Stonewall’ Jackson statue? Possibly L.A.

Published: Dec. 7, 2021 at 10:35 PM EST
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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - With the fate of Charlottesville’s statue of General Robert E. Lee determined, there’s just one Confederate statue left in the city’s control: the “Stonewall” Jackson monument.

City councilors seemed to be supportive of sending just the Jackson statue to LAXART, a nonprofit visual arts organization in Los Angeles. However, there was a question about if the organization would accept Jackson with Lee out of the picture.

Now, we have the answer.

NBC29 asked LAXART Director Hamza Walker Tuesday, December 7, if he would be willing to take only the Jackson statue, to which he responded, “yes.”

Not only would LAXART take just the one statue, it is also supportive of the decision to give the Lee statue to the Jefferson School.

“The people in Charlottesville, that’s who had to live under that statute,” Walker said. “So its fate should be, in that one in particular, decided by them.”

Walker said LAXART wants the Jackson statue to become a part of its MONUMENT exhibition, where it would be given to an artist who would have full discretion.

“Different strokes, different folks,” Walker said. “Some of them might go the route of wanting to go to Charlottesville and get some feedback input. Others might proceed completely in isolation.”

That could mean the statue may be part of an installation, in which case it would stay intact. Or, like the Lee statue, it could be melted down and transformed.

“It would be part of a larger exhibition about decommissioned Confederate monuments that would be placed alongside works of contemporary art,” Walker said.

Walker’s vision for that exhibition centers around the de- and re-contextualization in relation to myths and the “highly effective propaganda campaign” of the Lost Cause.

“Get us on the same page in terms of recognizing that the Civil War was in fact fought over slavery, not a set of ideals that would somehow transcend that fact,” Walker said, “and then to move forward with what kind of country we want to be.”

As far as the cost, LAXART’s original proposal was for $100,000 toward dismantling costs, a number Walker said will probably change since they may only get one statue. LAXART’s proposal said it would pay for “transportation and storage costs we would incur between the time of the monuments’ deposition and their display in Los Angeles.”

Walker said the city reached out to him and they are scheduled to talk on Wednesday.

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