New Deal art experts say painting over mural was vandalism

NEW YORK (AP) – The constellations in the night sky adorned a third-floor ceiling at New York’s DeWitt Clinton High School for more than 75 years.

But Scorpio, Taurus and the rest are now hidden under bright blue paint. Preservationists say the painting-over of the Alfred Floegel mural was a travesty.

“Constellations” was one of thousands of artworks paid for by New Deal programs during Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s administration.

The Daily News reports that someone painted over the mural last November. The city Department of Education says it happened during roof repairs at the 89-year-old Bronx school building.

Department spokesman Doug Cohen says officials are “exploring ways to restore this historic artwork.”

Art restorer Scott Haskins says it would be possible though expensive to remove the blue paint from the historic mural.


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