What we can learn from 'Scaffold' and similar controversies

The controversy over the "Scaffold" sculpture at the Walker Art Center is the latest in a series of incidents that raise questions about how we represent — or neglect — Native American perspectives in Minnesota history.

Three guests spoke with MPR News guest host Marianne Combs about how public art and monuments — whether at Fort Snelling, in paintings at the Capitol, or in the Walker Sculpture Garden — have sidestepped brutal Native American history, and how to change this pattern going forward.


Joe D. Horse Capture is the director of American Indian Initiatives at the Minnesota Historical Society.

Gwen Westerman is a professor at Minnesota State University, Mankato.

Shelley Buck, is one of the elders who negotiated with the Walker Center to take the sculpture down. She is also the president of the Prairie Island Indian Community.

To hear their full conversation, use the audio player above.