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The Whiplash Decade

History broke wide open — and so did the arguments about what should be memorialized

Illustration: Brennon Leman

This piece is part of the The Whiplash Decade, a package on the wild ride that was the 2010s.

On December 10, artist Kehinde Wiley’s Rumors of War will be unveiled at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts in Richmond. The bronze sculpture will reside permanently on Arthur Ashe Boulevard, blocks from Monument Avenue in the former capital of the Confederacy, where massive three-dimensional likenesses of Civil War generals Robert E. Lee and Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson have loomed over traffic, and memory, for more than a century.

Rumors of War is quintessential Wiley: At 27 feet tall, the statue is…

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