The art collective that unveiled naked statues of Donald Trump in major U.S. cities last year left Ku Klux Klan effigies hanging in a park in Richmond early Wednesday.
The faux Klansmen, left by the INDECLINE collective in Joseph Bryan Park overnight, were hanging from a tree dressed in multicolored wigs and clown shoes. A sign on one of the effigies read: “If attacked by a mob of clowns, go for the juggler.”
A spokeswoman for Richmond police said authorities were investigating the display, which was removed. The park was closed and cordoned off with crime scene tape, according to the Richmond Times-Dispatch.
A video published online Wednesday by INDECLINE includes footage of the clowns being assembled and mounted at dusk by people wearing masks. The video includes dialogue from a decades-old episode of the “Superman” radio show that ridiculed the KKK, interspersed with a Klan anthem featuring the lyrics: “Stand up and be counted/show that world that you’re a man … join the Ku Klux Klan.”
A statement from the group said Richmond was chosen for the display, called “Ku Klux Klowns,” because it was the capital of the Confederacy. The project is a response to the “White Nationalist uprising in the United States,” the statement said, and the park was chosen because it was the location of a slave rebellion in 1800.
INDECLINE was founded in 2001, according to its website. The group was thrust into the spotlight after it left Trump statues in New York, San Francisco and other cities before the 2016 presidential election. It has also covered stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame with names of African Americans killed by police.