Opinion by Katie Bowler Young
Art critic Doug MacCash recently posed an important question in his article, “Will the Enrique Alferez murals in the former Times-Picayune building survive?” Those in position to decide the fate of Alferez’s “Symbols of Communication” panels at the newspaper’s former headquarters on Howard Avenue must embrace their roles as stewards of a historically significant work of art.
The panels are not only characteristically representative of Alferez’s views as an individual and artist, they are also an important part of The Times-Picayune’s history and a celebration of the multicultural influences in New Orleans.
Alferez, who created “Symbols” in 1967, lived in New Orleans on and off from 1929 until his death in 1999. He lived with a foot in two cultures, that of his home country of Mexico and his chosen home in New Orleans. This Mexican sculptor had an influence on the city unparalleled by any other in its history. Today, there is a garden in his name, The Helis Foundation Enrique Alferez Sculpture Garden at the Botanical Garden in City Park, and there are more than 20 sites throughout the area bearing his influence.
Read the entire article on The Times-Picayune’s website.