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(Update) APSU Says Colored Nooses Were Part of Art Display

Austin Peay State University logo, Wikimedia Commons

Update Tuesday Afternoon:

Officials at Austin Peay State University say six nooses arranged in the colors of the rainbow were part of an art display for a class focusing on yarn and were not intended to be a political statement or hate symbol. 

APSU issued a statement Tuesday saying the unnamed student who made them was concerned about the perception of the display and apologetic for the reaction it caused.

The nooses were hung from a tree near the art building at the Clarksville campus Monday afternoon. Campus police removed them after a complaint. The school says the student and instructor supported the display's removal out of concern it was perceived as a hate symbol.

Original Story:  

Austin Peay State University in Clarksville is investigating whether six nooses arranged in the colors of the rainbow and hanging from a tree near the art building were part of an art project. 

APSU spokesman Bill Pesinger says someone called campus police about the display Monday afternoon. Police immediately took the nooses down out of concern they were meant as a hate symbol. Pesinger says the head of the art department is interviewing a student about the display. He says there was no artist's statement left with the nooses that could explain why they were hanging there.

University President Alisa White has issued a statementcalling the nooses "deeply disturbing" and says such incidents will not be tolerated.

Matt Markgraf joined the WKMS team as a student in January 2007. He's served in a variety of roles over the years: as News Director March 2016-September 2019 and previously as the New Media & Promotions Coordinator beginning in 2011. Prior to that, he was a graduate and undergraduate assistant. He is currently the host of the international music show Imported on Sunday nights at 10 p.m.
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