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Common Council OKs

Black Lives Matter Art

On Westcott Lot Fence

ONEONTA – Elizabeth Patterson, an Oneonta native and resident of Germantown, has received approval from Oneonta Common Council to hang a display supporting the Black Lives Matter movement on the fence above the Westcott Lot.

“The Westcott Lot is a perfect canvas,” said Patterson, owner of Ailish Floral, Germantown. “I want it to be visible to traffic and pedestrians.”

Her piece, which will include photos of black men and women killed by police, will also incorporate flowers and greenery.

Council Member Mark Drnek asked that she incorporate signage on the city’s Community Advisory Board and steps local law enforcement officers are taking to enhance community relations.

“We want to engage the public and encourage them to engage the police on things that are important to the community,” he said.

She agreed to work with him and Oneonta Police Chief Doug Brenner on the signage.

To permit the piece, Council voted to approve an amendment to the existing Muller Plaza permitting process, extending the plaza’s footprint to the Westcott Lot fence.

“This is a really special moment and a really special message to the community,” she said. “A lot of people need to see this.”



  1. As a lifetime city resident I feel we should also display a banner to Defend the police. Blue lives matter. All lives matter. If you are gonna put up a sign like that the whole city community should have a vote on this matter. I see a law suit in the future. Is the common council doing what is right for everyone in the city? I think not.

  2. Viewing Elizabeth Patterson’s powerful installation is painful. So many faces of so many people who should not have perished. The downtown display also gave me a sense if civic pride: We live in a community that values truth and justice. We are a community that is trying to learn from past mistakes.
    Recognizing injustice and honoring those who have passed is an important step in healing. Thank you Elizabeth Patterson and city leaders who have supported and enabled this important display.
    Jane Henry

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