A 1919 painting of Panther Hollow by Edward Redfield recently sold for $362,500 at a Christie's auction in New York City.
I would like to pay honor to the woman who sold this work of art. She is an artist who lives in South Carolina. She has never visited Panther Hollow but loved the painting. And she has made an extraordinary offer to our community of South Oakland: She wants to document the "sense of place" of Panther Hollow by painting the area herself.
How refreshing to have someone from elsewhere look to what she can give, rather than take, from our community -- someone who views our community as a place to be respected.
In the meantime, the University of Pittsburgh is moving forward with expansion plans for a new dormitory on Oakland Avenue. Pitt purchased the property from UPMC and tore down the old Children's Hospital building on the site.
I'm part of a grassroots movement that has been trying for three years to clean up South Oakland and make it healthier, but we have been refused the financial support needed by Pitt and UPMC. The trash and litter problems in South Oakland are the burden of the long-time residents, and the shame of Pitt and UPMC.
Let us hope the actions of a compassionate and dignified woman from South Carolina, whose only connection to our community is through a painting, will inspire Pitt and UPMC to do more to give back to our community.