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Artist John Sims, Herald- Tribune photo by Nick Adams

Artist John Sims: “The Confederate Flag: A Call to Burn and Bury”

The May 18 press release for John Sims’ 13 Flag Funerals was intentionally low key. The Sarasota-based conceptual artist announced that in each of the 13 Confederate states, a Memorial Day “funeral” would be held for the Confederate flag. The services were meant to mark the 150th anniversary of the end of the Civil War with “reflection, remembrance and closure.” The announcement immediately caught fire in the public sphere. A performance art project was seen as a purely political statement. Commentary exploded in the national media. The Florida organizer received threats of physical harm, and his employer was called upon to fire him. But on May 25th, the ashes of a Confederate flag were scattered in the Greenwood Urban Wetlands …
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