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By APB Staff Writer
October 2017, New York City:
New Yorkers and tourists in all five boroughs are flocking to see and experience renowned Chinese artist Ai Weiwei’s expansive Good Fences Make Good Neighbors public art exhibits.
Presented by New York City’s Public Art Fund, Weiwei’s exhibition includes over three hundred pieces which combine sculptures, ad platforms and metal lamppost banners.
Weiwei, who lived and studied in New York City in the 1980’s, conceived Good Fences Make Good Neighbors as a response to the global migration crisis. The title of the exhibit is based on the famous American poet Robert Frost’s proverb from Mending Wall where the need for boundaries are being questioned.
Among the most visited instillations are the “Arch” in Greenwich Village’s Washington Square Park, where Weiwei appeared at the official unveiling of Good Fences Make Good Neighbors along with celebrity supporter Olivia Wilde, among others.
Thousands of visitors and local New Yorkers have also frequented “Gilded Cage” at the entrance to Central Park at 60th Street – a structure which simultaneously evokes the luxury of Fifth Avenue and the hardships of confinement. The “Circle Fence” in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park, “Five Fences” at the Foundation Building of The Cooper Union, and “Bowery Fence” on the Lower East Side have also attracted numerous viewers.
Weiwei’s lamppost banners depict images of immigrants and refugees, some dating back to Ellis Island in the early 20th Century. The artist’s ad platforms display sketches of flowers, birds, butterflies, and refugees on long journeys – all to convey a message that “nature and human imagination cannot be confined.”
Ai Weiwei’s Good Fences Make Good Neighbors runs until February 11, 2018 in New York City.