Artist, organization behind Lexington mural respond to it being covered


LEXINGTON, Ky. (WTVQ)- The artist and arts organization behind a controversial new mural in Lexington are speaking out after part of the piece on a West Short Street building was painted over.

“Free speech isn’t a thing in Trump territory,” New York artist Elle shared Wednesday on Facebook after finding out someone painted over her work.

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That man told ABC 36 the owner of the building asked him to do it because he felt it was in everyone’s best interest to alter it.

“I’m grateful that the dude who painted over the text on my painting did so respectfully in not painting over the artwork-so I guess if it was gonna happen it happened in the best way possible,” Elle wrote.

The Lexington art organization Prhbtn, which brought Elle in to paint the mural, says it supports the building owner’s decision to paint over the phrase.

“The slogan included in Elle’s mural is constitutionally protected speech and we stand behind each and every one of our artists and Elle is no exception. We will never be afraid to speak out against racism, misogyny, xenophobia, bullying, and all other forms of hatred,” a statement from the group added.


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Veronica Jean Seltzer joins ABC 36 as Anchor/Reporter. On most weekdays, you will see her reporting the news. VJ hails from a small horse farm outside New York City and most recently comes from South Bend, Indiana where she reported for the CBS and Fox affiliates. VJ holds a Master of Science in Journalism degree from Columbia University and a Bachelor of Arts degree from Tufts University. Her passion for journalism runs deep. It began as she studied graffiti as an ancient form of communication in Athens, Greece. While a student journalist in Morocco, she learned her most important journalistic lesson: good stories are about people. VJ loves life in and around Lexington. She feels most at home among horses and a diverse community of fascinating people. She enjoys reporting during the week and on the weekend she strives to bring her neighbors the news that matters most to them. VJ enjoys going to neighborhood events, exploring, horseback riding, skiing, sailing, and good movies. Look for her out and about in the community! VJ invites you to reach out to her with story ideas or just to say hello! Find her on Facebook at Veronica Jean Seltzer ABC 36, tweet her @VJS_ABC36, or email her at She looks forward to hearing from you!