Village Neighborhood Group Unhappy With Ai Weiwei's Upcoming Washington Square Park Installation

This fall, Chinese dissident artist Ai Weiwei will embark on his largest public art project to date, bringing around 300 individual works to all five boroughs as part of an exhibition titled "Good Fences Make Good Neighbors".

The ambitious installation, commissioned by the Public Art Fund in celebration of their 40th anniversary, will explore the "migration crisis and current global geopolitical landscape" through site-specific security fences placed in prominent spots throughout the city. Those include Central Park, the Unisphere in Queens, and, most controversially, Washington Square Park.

As the Washington Square Blog first reported, some Greenwich Village residents are up in arms in response to last week's announcement by the Public Art Fund, which revealed that the Washington Square Park installation would be placed under the archway from October 12 through February 11.

In an open letter published Friday, the Washington Square Association — the city's oldest neighborhood group — decried the forthcoming installation, which they say was pushed through despite neighborhood concerns. (This is a deliciously meta bit of NIMBYism, we'll note, considering the piece is about fences and neighbors).

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