Saturday, August 13, 2016

The #PokeMonument is Now #PokeGone


Just two weeks ago, a Pokemon statue mysteriously appeared in the middle of a derelict fountain in Coliseum Square Park in New Orleans with only the words #Pokemonument carved into the base as a clue to its origins/meaning. As of just before midnight tonight, all that's left of the defiant, and sometimes controversial, Pikachu statue is the base structure with a new hashtag (#Pokegone), and a QR code embedded in the structure. I was notified by a source (who, along with the artists themselves, wishes to remain anonymous) that the guerrilla art piece had been "updated" and given a link to a website explaining the statue's sudden disappearance (that same website is where the QR code on what's left of the statue will take you). According to the website, you now have the opportunity to potentially own the statue itself and help repair the defunct fountains in Coliseum Square (some of which haven't been operational for decades). Here is their statement:




" Public sculpture, whether sanctioned or not, has the potential to transform and energize community spaces. 
    Thank you!  Thank you for all of your kind words and beautiful photographs. Most of all, thank you for contributing to the Renaissance of Coliseum Square Park!"
   
    When we snuck a Pikachu statue into the middle of a dry fountain on Terpsichore Street, we could not have imagined that it would attract so much attention. That the momentum would carry its image around the world.  Overwhelmed and touched doesn't begin to describe what the response has meant to us.
        
    #Pok√©monument was never conceived to be a permanent installation. We would like to use that positive momentum to bring about a larger, more permanent change for our community. We have donated #Pok√©monument to the Coliseum Square Association to be auctioned off to help fund the restoration of the fountains in the park."


The #Pokemonument as it originally stood.


Hundreds of people flocked to the statue after it sprang up in the middle of the night, and the story of the mysterious #Pokemonument gained International coverage. Most people loved the statue, and countless fans sought out the park to take a photo with the larger than life Pikachu, with some even leaving trinkets and tributes behind. A few were less than thrilled by his appearance. One woman took a baseball bat to the piece in an attempt to destroy it, and someone else spray painted the statue with some particularly unkind words. Thankfully, the residents in the area adopted the statue and were quick to come to his aid and repair any damages he suffered.

The fountain the statue rested in has been inoperative for decades (according to one resident), and prior to the installation of the illegal artwork the base was full of little more than stagnant water and some old tires. This particular fountain is just one of several in the small park that have been sorely neglected and are in serious need of repair. Here's hoping that this famous piece of art can help bring in the funds needed to bring this otherwise lovely, little oasis in New Orleans' Lower Garden District back to its full glory!

This is all that remains. For now.

If you'd like more information on the auction, please visit the artists' website by clicking here!

2 comments:

  1. Sad that it is gone, but I do hope it's brief fame will help restore the park to its former glory. ❤

    ReplyDelete
  2. Sad that it is gone, but I do hope it's brief fame will help restore the park to its former glory. ❤

    ReplyDelete