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Articles on public art

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Members of the Japanese artist collective Me (meaning “eyes” in Japanese) launch an inflatable artwork entitled Masayume, on the occasion of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. Yoshio Tsunoda/AFLO/Alamy Live News

Giant inflatables and flying dancers: Olympic art has always turned heads

The giant head spotted hovering over the Tokyo skyline in recent weeks is the latest in a long line of Olympic art moments. Debate and controversy are never far behind.
A woman walks past a mural in Vancouver, B.C. The power of public art is its ability to turn artistic practice into a social action. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Marissa Tiel

Bringing art into public spaces can improve the social fabric of a city

When public art pairs artistic expression with community engagement, it can honour the diverse communities that share public spaces and spur important conversations.
Artist Steven Shearer’s untitled billboard images of reclining and sleeping people were displayed as part of Capture Photography Festival in Vancouver but were soon removed due to complaints. (Dennis Ha)

Vancouver billboards by artist Steven Shearer evoked intimacy where people least expected it

Examining parallels between Steven Shearer’s billboard images and religious figures of 17th century baroque art allow a consideration of how context is everything when it comes to reading images.
Artist Joi T. Arcand explains ‘Never Surrender,’ ‘translates a …1980s Canadian pop song into the Cree language and recontextualiz[es] the lyrics as an anthem of Indigenous sovereignty.’ Here, the image layered over a photo of a Winnipeg sidewalk. (Noor)

Nuit Blanche Toronto goes virtual to change how people see art and public space

Both the COVID-19 pandemic and urgent debates around public heritage and monuments shape how Nuit Blanche Toronto is seeking to engage artists and viewers in remapping cities.
Kaldor Public Art Project 3: Gilbert & George. The Singing Sculpture, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 16 – 21 August 1973 Copyright: Gilbert & George Courtesy Art Gallery of New South Wales

The heady sense of being at the heart of public art: 50 years of the Kaldor Foundation

Fifty years after Christo and Jeanne-Claude wrapped the NSW coast at Little Bay, the Art Gallery of NSW celebrates the long term consequences of John Kaldor’s creative philanthropy.
This playable tram generates different musical compositions at different speeds when viewed through a smartphone camera using an augmented reality app. James H.H. Morgan

Take the tram into a more playable city

Melbourne has its first playable art tram – a 32.5-metre-long musical score played via augmented reality. So what’s the idea of playable trams and playable cities really about?
Waltercio Caldas (Brazil), Around, Leirfjord municipality. © Vegar Moen

How to get environmental art right

Artscape Nordland – a Norwegian environmental sculpture project – is exceptional.
#WeLiveHere2017 aims to turn inanimate buildings into metaphorical sentient structures, with ‘mood lights’ expressing the feelings of Matavai and Turanga Tower residents about their neighbourhood’s redevelopment. Nic Walker courtesy of #WeLiveHere2017

We Live Here: how do residents feel about public housing redevelopment?

Residents of two high-rise public housing blocks are being given ‘mood lights’ to express how they feel based on their experience of the process of redeveloping their neighbourhood.

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