Good Fences Make Good Neighbors, taken from a Robert Frost poem, is the (ironic) title of the massive installation (set up in 300 locations throughout all of New York) inaugurated last week, created by Ai Wei Wei for the 40th anniversary of the Public Art Fund. Like the recent documentary by the Chinese artist, Human Flow, Fences is a reflection on borders, barriers and migratory movements.
Of similar inspiration is The Federation, an idea with a name almost willfully Star Trek-esque, launched by Laurie Anderson and Tanya Selvaratnam. But it is one of the many initiatives of “the resistance.”
The Federation is a project hatched this spring in a West Village loft during a series of meetings almost recalling those of the Carbonari Italian revolutionaries, involving artists, curators, representatives of international cultural institutions, activists already working on the midterm elections, young veterans of the Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton campaigns, and, on a few occasions, even the Attorney General of New York, Eric Schneiderman (concerned that the artistic community, compared to the scientific and judicial worlds, is not mobilizing enough against the implications of Trumpian policies). The Federation had its official unveiling during a panel held on Oct. 11 at the New York Film Festival.