Ai Weiwei’s city-wide installation Good Fences Make Good Neighbors is poised to appear in New York City on October 12, and a new Kickstarter campaign spearheaded by the Public Art Fund is seeking to make sure the project can maintain one of its most crucial features: being a public work of art. The organization is seeking to raise $80,000 by September 20, and is well on its way having already received $23,503 in contributions at the time of publish.
Along with the fundraising campaign, the Public Art Fund has released the locations for the major site-specific installations that will anchor the project, as well as the numerous other localities Ai’s largest public art exhibition to date will appear.
Major installations will be on view at Central Park’s Doris C. Freedman Plaza, the Washington Square Arch, the Unisphere at Flushing Meadows-Corona Park, in cooperation with the Park Department. It will also be on view on top of and in between private buildings at 48 East 7th Street, 189 Chrystie Street, 248 Bowery, The Cooper Union, the Essex Street Market, and about 10 bus shelter.
Good Fences Make Good Neighbors is a reflection on the growing hostility towards immigrants and the rise of nationalism throughout the world, Ai told the Times when the installation was announced back in March.
“The fence has always been a tool in the vocabulary of political landscaping and evokes associations with words like ‘border,’ ‘security,’ and ‘neighbor,’ which are connected to the current global political environment,” Ai said in a statement. “But what’s important to remember is that while barriers have been used to divide us, as humans we are all the same. Some are more privileged than others, but with that privilege comes a responsibility to do more.”
In addition to the major installations, Ai has also created 200 smaller two-dimensional works that will appear as lamppost banners. The installation will also display documentary images taken by Ai during his travels—the Chinese government reinstated his passport in 2015—that will be paired with poetic and factual texts about the world’s worsening refugee crisis.