False Creek neighborhood mobilizes against installation of massive sculpture
Hundreds of people rally against an eccentric sculpture that is said to be installed on the south side of False Creek along the sea wall.
The artwork is titled “Boy Holding a Shark” and was created by Chen Wenling. The sculpture shows a blue boy holding a silver shark that appears to be melting. According to the Vancouver Biennale, the organization that plans to install the artwork, it is nearly eight meters tall and weighs 1,200 kg.
“Boy holding a shark looks at the subject of human nature, ”reads a description on the Biennale website. “This work is the artist’s reflection on the growing tension between man and the ocean. It is a warning that the destruction of nature will eventually thwart humanity itself. “
The nonprofit says Wenling wants to bring up concerns about environmental issues, thereby inspiring change in the global community.
It appears, however, that many residents of False Creek want to stop the art installation altogether. An online petition titled “Stop False Creek South Sculpture” has received over 300 signatures.
“It would be an unsightly imposition on the garden-like setting of this False Creek neighborhood,” the petition reads. “There was little neighborhood consultation on this project.
Many residents who signed the petition also explained why they didn’t want it installed. Many people held similar opinions, arguing that the structure was too large and intrusive. The lack of public consultation was also mentioned.
Another argument was the location. Boy Holding a Shark is expected to be installed on the south side of False Creek along the sea wall near Stamps Landing.
Several people who signed the petition pointed out that the area is already narrow and crowded, arguing that visual distraction could lead to accidents involving cyclists and pedestrians.
Wenling’s art, however, is no stranger to Vancouver. He is also the artist behind “The Proud Youth,” a five-and-a-half-meter-tall, two-ton sculpture that is on display near the sea wall at North False Creek.
Daily Hive has contacted the Vancouver Biennale for further comment.