A brightly-colored mural by Os Gemeos (Brazilian twins Otavio and Gustavo Pandolfo) has looked down on Dewey Square since it’s instillation in July 2012. Since the site attracted little attention before Occupy Boston set up camp in 2011, some associated the masked figure with a participant in the Occupy Wall Street movement. More neutral parties simply described him as a kid in mismatched pajamas. Either way, it’s soon to be painted over.
The Institute of Contemporary Art/Boston has commissioned Matthew Ritchie to install a 5000′ square abstract seascape to take it’s place, the Boston Globe reports. It’s scheduled for installation the week of September 16 and is expected to be replaced about a year and a half later, the same schedule as was set for its predecessor.
The Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy Greenway Conservancy, an organization that has come under fire for financial matters, is funding the $17,000 installation. According to Geoff Edgers:
The collaboration, to be announced Monday at a Boston Arts Commission meeting, is part of a residency for Ritchie that will include a multimedia performance with members of the rock bands The Breeders and The National, concerts at the museum and elsewhere, and a video project to be produced with the ICA’s teen program. But the biggest splash for the public will come on the exterior of the Big Dig ventilation building in Dewey Square.
Edgers also notes that Os Gemeos mural now in place “made national news when the local Fox television affiliate posted an image of it to a Facebook page, inspiring comments accusing the brothers of creating an image that resembled a terrorist because of the way the face was partially shrouded in clothing.”
I love public art, but this $17,000 price tag makes me squeamish. How do you feel about it? Please comment below.