The police killing of Walter Scott in South Carolina was something of a last straw for Baltimore artist Loring Cornish. It prompted him to close his gallery and set up a public art installation outside his studio on the 2700 block of Parkwood Avenue.
Cornish collected plastic dolls, painted them black, and hung them from a tree. He told WBAL his thinking behind the piece:
“I wanted to make a statement. I wanted to show people exactly what’s going on with a figure of something that I’ve been feeling. It’s pretty much death,” he said. “We’re being killed like innocent babies. Who should get shot eight times?”
It’s a shocking artwork, and easy to misinterpret. On Twitter, it seems that many believed at first look that it was a racist statement, rather than a protest.
— JoyLepolaStewart (@jlepolastewart) April 13, 2015
But even among those who understand the message, some feel it is “a bit loud.” Others feel the intensity is warranted, given the ongoing tragedy of African Americans being killed by police.