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District Accepts Donation of Artwork Memorializing Racial Integration

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District Accepts Donation of Artwork Memorializing Racial Integration

May 13, 2017 - 06:57

District Accepts Donation of Artwork Memorializing Racial Integration

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NEW ROCHELLE, NY -- High school teacher Darren Gurney donated a collotype of Norman Rockwell's iconic painting "The Problem We All Live With" to the district at Tuesday's Board of Education meeting on behalf of his father, Clark Gurney, a longtime city resident.

The painting will be permanently displayed at New Rochelle High School.

Clark Gurney has lived in the same home in New Rochelle for the past 50 years. Both of his sons went to NRHS, and he's been a huge supporter of the school's baseball team over the years.

Gurney felt that NRHS was the ideal resting place for the Rockwell piece, given the district's history of racial integration and ethnic diversity as a school system. 

"My father has always been an inspiration to me in the way he views the world," said Darren Gurney. "This painting's presence at New Rochelle High School will always remind me of his non-conventional approach and unique perspective on life."

Superintendent Brian Osborne shared that the painting depicts Ruby Bridges' history-changing walk integrating the William Frantz Public School in New Orleans on November 14, 1960.

"It is a stark reminder of the evil of senseless hate," he said. "It is quite fitting that it will now hang in New Rochelle High School where we embrace diversity."

The signed artist's proof collotype is one of only 10 in existence.