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va says wounded iraq war vet's sculpture is too real to display

va says wounded iraq war vet's sculpture is too real to display News Article With The full text news. The Resource Link is down the post and you can View this News Article in the source page.



va says wounded iraq war vet's sculpture is too real to display

marine veteran bill deroche had been encouraged for years to enter an art competition at the minneapolis veterans affairs medical center. injured in a 2004 bomb blast that struck his convoy in iraq, it would be a way, he was told, to publicly address the trauma that continues to affect him.but the va balked when it got a look at photos of the sculpture deroche planned to enter. it includes four 155 mm shells connected by wires, a representation of the improvised explosive devices or ieds often used in the kind of blast that injured him. the shells in the artwork, deroche was told, were a risk to public safety and a threat to a vulnerable population.although the shells are inert, the va wants them removed. deroche has refused, saying it would ruin the message of the work.the standoff means deroche’s work is banned from next month’s competition.“i did a lot of reading and hearing over the years about the ied stuff,” he said. “i felt i could sit down and put myself into this artwork. but now they are telling me no. i’m totally baffled. what if i did the best oil painting ever but it had injured people in it so that is going to offend somebody? i’m at a loss.”it is only the second time in 30 years of the art competition that an entry has been rejected, the va said.the minneapolis veterans creative arts competition features several categories, including sculpture. besides restrictions on the size of the art and when it needed to be submitted, there are few rules ab...