Danny Glover Speaks Out In Opposition To Destruction Or Covering Of New Deal Murals At George Washington High School

For Immediate Release:    August 12, 2019

Jon Golinger – for Coalition to Protect Public Art (415) 531-8585
Noah Griffin – for Mr. Glover (415) 756-3933

News Release


Today, internationally acclaimed actor, activist and social justice warrior Danny Glover signed on to join the Advisory Committee of the Coalition to Protect Public Art to support the cause of preserving the 13 Victor Arnautoff New Deal Murals at George Washington High School and oppose destroying the murals or blocking them from view.

In a statement today, Mr. Glover said: “As a Washington High graduate, I’ve spent my entire life fighting for freedom and the right of artistic expression.  Whether it was being in the forefront to bring about the first Black Studies Department in the country at San Francisco State or being involved in films like The Color Purple and most recently the Last Black Man in San Francisco, my record is clear and unambiguous.

I am for freedom of expression and against artistic censorship.  I view Arnautoff’s murals, as they were for me, a reminder of the horrors of human bondage and the mistreatment of native peoples, even by the father of our country. 

To destroy them or block them from view would be akin to book burning.  We would be missing the opportunity for enhanced historic introspection this moment has provided us.”

Mr. Glover joins more than two dozen artists and art community leaders, civil rights leaders, educators, George Washington High School Alumni, and San Franciscans from across the political spectrum on the Advisory Committee for the Coalition to Protect Public Art.  

The CPPA Advisory Committee now includes the following individuals:


Art Agnos, former Mayor of San Francisco

JoAnne Bernstein, Professor Emerita of Art History, Mills College

Robert Tamaka Bailey, Choctaw Nation Elder

Enrique Chagoya, Painter, Printmaker, Professor, Stanford University Dept. of Art

Gwen Chan, Former Interim Superintendent, SF Unified School District

Dewey Crumpler, Professor, SF Art Institute and Muralist, GW High School

Danny Glover, Actor and Alumnus of George Washington High School

Noah Griffin, Commissioner, USA 250 Commission

Emil de Guzman, former leader, International Hotel Tenants Association

Henry Der, former Executive Director, Chinese for Affirmative Action

Dianne Fukami, Bay Area filmmaker

Matt Gonzalez, former President, SF Board of Supervisors

Alvin Ja, former leader, Asian American Political Alliance

Robert Johnson, Curator Emeritus, Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco

Quentin Kopp, former Judge and State Senator

Anne Kronenberg, former Director, SF Department of Emergency Services

Rocco Landesman, former Chairman, National Endowment for the Arts

Will Maynez, Curator, Diego Rivera Mural Project at City College of San Francisco

Annette Melville, Executive Director Emeritus, National Film Preservation Foundation

Dale Minami, Civil Rights Attorney & Co-founder, Asian Law Caucus

Therese Poletti, Preservation Director, Art Deco Society of California

Jeffrey Pollack, Former President, Fisherman’s Wharf Restaurant Association

Barth Chief Eagle Robinson, Rosebud Sioux Tribe

John Rothmann, President, George Washington High School Alumni Association

Natalie Sabelnik, President, Congress of Russian Americans

Harvey Smith, President, National New Deal Preservation Association

John Trasvina, former U.S. Assistant Secretary for Fair Housing & Equal Opportunity

Lope Yap, Jr., Vice-President, George Washington High School Alumni Association

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Paid for by the Coalition To Protect Public ArtFinancial disclosures available at sfethics.org

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