After Chinatown Protests, ‘Dogman’ Sculpture Headed to Foley Square
The so-called “Dogman” fled Kimlau Square with the proverbial tail between its legs.
When the Lunar Year of the Dog arrived back in February, controversy reached Chinatown with the proposed placement of a 900-pound anthropomorphic canine statue in a suit holding a red apple. Australian artists Gillie and Marc Shattner titled this seated, good-luck hound, “He Thought This was Going to Be a Year of Good Fortune.” However, locals argued that the life-sized Dogman, as it’s nicknamed, whitewashed the traditional imagery, and that it disrespected the namesake Chinese-American soldier and war memorial.
The Chinatown Partnership, which sees this statue as a way to attract tourist traffic (and dollars) to the neighborhood (with all the selfies) caught instant flack. A hyperlocal petition subsequently surfaced and quickly garnered hundreds of opposition signatures.
The area business improvement district ultimately heard the message loud and clear. The installation event was canceled altogether, and location changed. Sometime soon, the Dogman will take up residence in Foley Square, near the corner of Centre and Worth, and will remain through May.
While outside the neighborhood boundaries now, some may say the same Chinatown whitewash argument is still valid.