7. Ai Weiwei Builds ‘Good Fences Make Good Neighbors’ with The Public Art Fund
The Washington Square Park installation would feature a 16-ft-high opening in the outline of two embracing people. Rendering via Frahm & Frahm
Inspired by the current immigration crisis in the United States and around the world, the well-known, Chinese-born artist, Ai Weiwei, will erect fences that symbolize a ‘gateway to the United States’ for millions of immigrants. The multi-site project, entitled Good Fences Make Good Neighbors, will include installations in 300 locations throughout the five boroughs — in both iconic and historic places, in addition to rooftops and bus shelters.
The largest installations will be at the Doris C. Freedman Plaza (a large walk-in cage), Flushing Meadows Corona Park and under the Washington Square Park Arch, where a controversial 50-foot cage will displace the Park’s 45-foot Christmas tree this season. Smaller interventions will be featured at the Essex Street Market; the building at 48 East 7th Street, where WeiWei lived in the 1980s; on the rooftops at 189 Chrystie Street and 248 Bowery, and on the north facade of Cooper Union at Astor Place, just to name a few. In addition, 200 lamppost banners will feature portraits of immigrants and images will be displayed on LinkNYC kiosks. With the intention of keeping this topic front and center, Good Fences will overwhelm our five boroughs with the “physical manifestation and metaphorical expression of division.”