Petitioning City of Pittsburgh Art Commission

Petition for the Removal of the Stephen C. Foster Statue

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The Stephen Foster statue currently standing in the heart of Oakland near the University of Pittsburgh's campus is a remarkably racist relic that immortalizes white supremacy and cultural appropriation. The following is an excerpt from an article in The Incline, written by Colin Deppen, that highlights this point:

"The statue depicts Foster (who was white) looking regal above a banjo-playing black man in tattered clothing. The statue, which sits near the University of Pittsburgh campus on Forbes Avenue in Oakland, was commissioned in 1900 by a local newspaper editor who imagined Foster, 'catching the inspiration for his melodies from the fingers of an old darkey [emphasis added] reclining at his feet strumming negro airs upon an old banjo,' per a 2010 City Paper article."

Yes, slavery is a fact of this nation's history - a fact that we cannot erase.  But that doesn't mean we must continue to celebrate it. Relics like this belong in a museum (if anywhere at all). Not surrounded by flowers near Pitt's campus. In response to the most recent outcry over this statue, the Mayor's office has asked the Art Commission to review its future.

Let's make our stance on racism clear to the Mayor and the Art Commission. Let's show them that Pittsburgh is better than this. Sign this petition for the removal of the Foster statue and make your voice heard as a person who stands on the right side of history.

Demand action.  Foster must go.

(Photo: Colin Deppen / The Incline)

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  • City of Pittsburgh Art Commission

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