Urban Fold

Why Public Art?

Public art plays a role in cities across the world. But what role exactly, and for what purpose? Glass House Conversations explores these questions in this series.

"Often the term Public Art is used interchangeably with Art in Public Spaces – parks, intersections, squares and the like. What is the function of art in these spaces and how does it connect to or serve the Public? Are the commissioners of such art fulfilling a public mandate or need?

Whose or which "Public Interest" is served by Urs Fischer's Untitled (Lamp/Bear) outside the Seagram building on Park Ave, in New York, a version of which will be auctioned by Christie's? A few blocks away, Ai Wei Wei's Circle of Animals/Zodiac Heads was opened with statements from the art world's luminaries, but where is the programming to further their meaning and significance to the public they serve?"

No Longer Empty, which redefines public art through temporary site-specific exhibitions, curates this discussion of public art's role.

Full Story: What is the function of art in public spaces and how does it connect to or actively serve people?

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