Leonard Greene, New York Daily News, October 23, 2019
A Brooklyn art studio owner is under fire for a racially-explosive Halloween window display that featured brown paper dolls that appeared to be hanging by their necks from strings.
Among the neighbors and passersby offended by the Clinton Hill decorations were administrators at nearby Public School 11, who asked the homeowner to take them down.
A neighborhood parent said she was walking by Wednesday with her 4-year-old twins when she saw the troubling display. She said she took pictures and knocked on the homeowner’s door, but got no answer.
The mother went back to the school and notified the principal before posting the photos on Facebook under the name Love Jones.
“Her window faces the schoolyard,” the outraged mother said. “The kids can look outside and see her window.”
The display was photographed and shared on Facebook the same day President Trump compared the Democratic-led impeachment inquiry to a lynching.
The chagrined studio owner, Dany Rose quickly apologized and removed the display, but not before the posted pictures triggered an angry backlash.
“I made a tremendous mistake,” Rose said in the post. “I now realize the harm and hurt caused by the unacceptable imagery I used in my Halloween decorations at my home and understand how it connects to the centuries of historical trauma in this country.
“Please trust that I will take the time to educate myself and my family and will do everything in my power to make amends. I hope this incident does not take away from all the hardworking, respected members of the Artshack community, and the work that we do for our community.”
“The images were based on the horror movie ‘Annabelle,’ but because they were made of brown kraft paper and hanging from strings, they were deeply racially offensive,” said Rose, who is white. “No one should have had to point out this obvious fact to me, and I immediately removed the figures when I was contacted by school officials from P.S.11, across the street from my home. I understand that ignorance is no excuse and apologies are not enough, but nonetheless I want to apologize sincerely to my neighbors and community.”
“How did you `not know’ this would be offensive?” a Facebook user, Linda Earl, responded on social media. “Ridiculous. Send your donations to a non-profit that really cares about providing art opportunities to ALL, including people of color.”