In honor of Tom Finkelpearl’s appointment as the director of Cultural Affairs for the City of New York, let’s recall one of Tom’s great battle’s in his efforts to the support that artists that worked for the community. After years working with communities in the Bronx, John Ahearn was selected to create three sculptures for the NYC Public Art Program under Tom’s leadership. Due to opposition by other leaders in the Bronx, the sculptures were removed to Socrates Sculpture Park where they are today. A black boy in a hoodie with his dog was too much real life for a prominent place. Tom pushed the boundaries for years and years. Any leader with conviction needs to both win and lose the battles along the way.
Last year in Sydney Australia, Caroline Rothwell installed The Youngesters without problem. Time and place make all the difference.