Schenectady County

Claim filed over Troy’s closing of arts center

The New York Civil Liberties Union has filed a claim against the city of Troy for closing an arts ce
PHOTOGRAPHER:

The New York Civil Liberties Union has filed a claim against the city for closing an arts center after the opening of a controversial exhibit.

The city cited code violations when it shuttered the Sanctuary for Independent Media on March 11, a day after an installation piece by Iraqi-American artist Wafaa Bilal opened.

“Virtual Jihadi” was previously shut down at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute amid concerns it glorified terrorism.

In a notice of claim against the city, the NYCLU contends Public Works Commissioner Robert Mirch had the building closed because he didn’t approve of the exhibit. It says the notice will be followed by a lawsuit unless the case is settled. The center has reopened.

City officials did not return calls for comment today.

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