Controversial statues taken down in Santa Fe

New Mexico News

Some statues are suddenly getting the boot in Santa Fe. 

Two very different monuments showcasing moments from New Mexico’s history are no longer on display.

The Trinity Site replica was unveiled just a few weeks ago outside the Santa Fe Community Convention Center.
City officials said the donated piece was a part of their “atomic summer” theme.

“There’s a series of lectures and events in coordination with the Los Alamos Historical Society,” said city spokesperson Matt Ross. 
But now the space is empty. The controversial prop from the sci-fi series “Cosmos” received mixed reviews and the city ultimately decided to take it down.

“We put it up and it became pretty quickly a flash point of contention, a point of argument, a point of anger, and it just wasn’t worth the distraction,” Ross said. 

That prop isn’t the only monument getting the boot in downtown Santa Fe.

For the past three years, a pump jack statue sat in front of the State Land Office.

“Its sad that people don’t realize how much oil and gas benefits the state,” said State Land Commissioner Aubrey Dunn. 

The statue is now on a trailer waiting to go to the San Juan College in Farmington. Dunn decided to donate it to the school because it’s an election year, and he said he doesn’t want to see the next person come in and destroy what he calls an important symbol.

“There have been candidates that have spoken about how happy they are to be able to move. So instead of giving them the pleasure we went a head and moved it ourselves,” Dunn said. 

The pump jack will be moved in the next two weeks. The Trinity Site replica was given to a local film maker. 

This isn’t the first time a sculpture has been removed from the State Land Office. 

In 2015, the pump jack replaced the “Brickhead” sculpture which sat outside the land office since 2011. Dunn apparently didn’t like it, so it was moved to a nearby park.

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