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Giant bunnies only latest in Boston's burgeoning untraditional art scene

Giant bunnies and ring swings

Giant buns and ring swings at Lawn on D. Photo by Views of the Northeast.

As the Lawn on D unveiled its latest installation - several two-story-high white rabbits - its organizers took time to discuss the idea of artwork as spectacle in Boston, a city where the idea of public art used to involve stone sculptures meant to be looked at, but not touched.

This season's numerous interactive exhibits are the second year of programming for the D Street ArtLab, a project promoting art installments in public spaces. After featuring only local artists last summer, the D Street ArtLab is now showcasing artists from around the world; Current exhibitors Kelly Goff and Amanda Parer (the woman behind the rabbits) are from Curacao and Australia.

Moderated by Lawn on D artistic director Chris Wangro, the Play in Public Art panel featured currently exhibiting artists and local art educators to discuss spectacle, site and architecture.

Parer's Intrude is the largest exhibit on the lawn; it features five lit up inflatable bunnies, each two stories tall. Back for a second year is Höweler + Yoon Architecture's crowd pleaser Swing Time, a series of LED-lit circular swings.

Unlike at a museum or traditional art show, community members and lawn-goers are encouraged to touch, sit on and take selfies with all of the interactive installments.

During the panel and Q&A, artists and audience members expressed pride in the Lawn on D's current exhibits and a desire for art in more of Boston's public spaces. They said Boston wasn't always considered "art friendly" but they're persevering to change that.

Most D Street ArtLab exhibits will be at the Lawn through October. The monster bunnies, however, will only show through July 12.

Photo copyright Views of the Northeast. Posted in the Universal Hub pool on Flickr.

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I have to say, I'm looking forward to seeing this for myself this weekend. Nice night for an hour long walk, grab an adult beverage and view the bunnies, then hit the Echelman aerial sculpture on the way back. Check, check and check.

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This site's usually stellar balance of things testudinal and lagomorphic has taken recent turns that are beginning to leave me plussed. What the hell s happening to this godforsaken caecotroph town ? Snow piles not big enough ? Eergggh

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Says nothing, bothers nobody, hey look, we have "arts"! but no art. Feels nice but basically worthless.

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"All art is at once surface and symbol. Those who go beneath the surface do so at their peril. Those who read the symbol do so at their peril. It is the spectator, and not life, that art really mirrors. Diversity of opinion about a work of art shows that the work is new, complex, and vital. When critics disagree, the artist is in accord with himself. We can forgive a man for making a useful thing as long as he does not admire it. The only excuse for making a useless thing is that one admires it intensely.
All art is quite useless."

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When we were there, hundreds of people were enjoying and interacting with the bunnies on the lawn, including young families, teens, adults, etc. The spectacle from above at the convention center was most interesting.

its organizers took time to discuss the idea of artwork as spectacle in Boston, a city where the idea of public art used to involve stone sculptures meant to be looked at, but not touched.

Yep. That seems to sum up your attitude. Nice that not everyone is so very stuck in the sand. Too bad there aren't any hookah smoking caterpillars or kinds of mushrooms to help you out here.

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