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Controversial mural in Koreatown changed after outrage

A mural originally unveiled in Koreatown several years ago that reminded some of Imperial Japan has been completely redone, reports the Los Angeles Times.

Many Korean Americans demanded that the mural at the Robert F Kennedy Community School be altered because it reminded them of the time Koreans were oppressed under Japanese rule, AsAmNews reported in 2019.

Artist Beau Stanton says the mural was actually a homage to actress Ava Gardner and at first resisted changing it.

Three months later, he gave into the demands.

The sunrays which sparked the controvery are now more subdued and moved to the background, rather than the center of the piece.

“I genuinely hope this saga can serve as a constructive example of how to balance the input of local stakeholders with creative free expression in public art,” Stanton said.

Members of the Korean American community seem happy with the change.

“It was very, very touching. I feel validated,” said high school principal Kate Sohn at an unveiling of the mural Wednesday morning. “I feel like it really does represent inclusion in our community.”

At the time the controversy broke out, many artists backed Stanton and accused those opposed to his work of censorship.

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