Heard on the Hill

Ferguson Painting Coming Down Again

Controversial piece, subject of tug of war between Democrats and Republicans, determined to violate rules

The controversial painting by Missouri student David Pulphus depicts police officers as animals. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

The Capitol high school art competition painting of police-community relations in Ferguson, Missouri, which was the subject of a tug of war between Democrats and Republicans last week, is coming down.

The painting, which depicts police officers as animals, was ruled to be in violation of House Office Building Commission rules and will be taken down after the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday weekend, Washington GOP Rep. Dave Reichert said, accroding to CNN.

[Heard on the Hill This Week: The Saga of the Student Painting Heist]

Reichert wrote a letter earlier this week to the Architect of the Capitol, which caused that office to determine the painting a violation of House rules.

[Ryan Calls Ferguson Painting ‘Disgusting’]

Throughout the week, the painting was taken down by four Republican members of Congress on three different occasions, and taken to the office of its sponsor, Missouri Democratic Rep. William Lacy Clay, whose district includes Ferguson.

[Controversial Ferguson Painting Removed From Display for Third Time]

On Thursday, Speaker Paul D. Ryan called for the painting to be removed, calling it “disgusting” on a radio show.

The artist, David Pulphus, who Clay consistently defended, was a high school student in Clay’s district when he submitted his work to the contest. He is now attending college in Chicago.

[Clay and First Amendment Scholar Ask Speaker Not to Remove Ferguson Painting]

Currently, the painting hangs with other contest winners after being taken down and rehung during the week. Most recently, a “thin blue line” flag (symbolic of mourning for police officers) was added above the painting.

Get breaking news alerts and more from Roll Call on your iPhone or your Android.