New Art To Bring Perspective To Memorial Hall Mural

Posted at 5:00 AM, Aug 16, 2018
and last updated 2018-08-16 05:00:24-04

LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18)– We’re learning more about a new piece of art in UK’s Memorial Hall, a companion piece to a mural depicting slaves.

Philadelphia-based artist, Karyn Olivier, was chosen to create the piece, which she has titled "witness," to add context to a controversial mural on campus.

This comes after years of discussion about the other piece, which was painted in 1934, and includes enslaved Africans.

The mural was covered, then there were plans to move it until a compromise–including new art to add some context–was reached.

Olivier is focusing on Memorial Hall’s dome, including gold leaf and images of oppressed people from Kentucky’s history to honor their sacrifices and impact on the Commonwealth.

"It’s always a benefit when we reconsider artworks and contextualize them up against the present moment," Oliver said. "Because that present moment is going to make us think about the future and maybe we’ll do something different in the future, I don’t know."

There is still much to be done, including raising the chandelier that hangs in the dome.

It’s unclear when the artwork will be completed.