Artist creates portrait of local children killed by gun violence at Butler Art Museum

Local News

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – World renowned artist Bill Dotson made a stop in Youngstown Wednesday to use his art as a way of speaking out against gun violence.

Dotson worked on a piece inside the main area of the Butler Institute of American Art, which depicts children who have lost their lives to gun violence, including five-year-old Rowan Sweeney and 10-year-old Persayus Davis-May, both killed locally.

“Bill’s got a heart of gold and this artwork is beautiful, and already it’s attracting attention. And hopefully, if art can make a difference, Bill’s work will make a difference,” said Dr. Louis Zona, director of the Butler Institute of American Art.

Dotson uses a unique method of “scribbling” lines to create his images. He has done work nationwide and has several other pieces at the Butler Art Museum.

Zona says this piece was important to do because of all the recent gun violence in the city. He says he wanted the museum to get involved and help in their own way.

“I know that art can’t solve all our problems, but it sure draws attention to something that is so evil and that, the killing of children by gunfire,” Zona said.

Dotson is not yet finished with the piece and will keep working on it over the next couple days. Zona says once finished, he hopes Dotson will allow them to then display it to the community.

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