These Kids Seesaws Are Like Nothing You've Ever Seen
Why architects have installed them at the U.S./Mexico border
The idea that art can literally bridge divides was proven this week when a team of architects installed bright pink seesaws at the U.S. Mexico border for children on both sides of the wall to use to play with each other.
Architect design partners and educators, Ronald Rael and Virginia San Fratello, worked together with Mexican art collective, Colectivo Chopeke, to install the seesaws along an area of the border fence that divides Sunland Park, New Mexico and Colonia Anapra in Juarez, Mexico. The artists slid the wooden planks through the slats in the fence, creating a fulcrum between the two sides.
(Source: video Ronald Rael Facebook page )
Rael and San Fratello dreamed up the "Teeter Totter Wall" in 2009, and you can find the original drawings and models for the installation at the Museum of Modern Art in New York and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. In a statement to NPR , Rael and San Fratello said that the seesaws are meant to tell the story of "how the actions on one side of the border have direct consequences on the other."
After the seesaws were installed, children and adults on both sides of the wall rushed to engage with them. While Rael was nervous about the outcome of the project at first due to current tensions at the border, the atmosphere was joyful and carefree with people on both sides of the border smiling at each other through the fence.
"It was peaceful and fun - a day at a park for the children and mothers of Anapra."
After the event, Rael shared an emotional post on Instagram .
"One of the most incredible experiences of my and @vasfsf 's career bringing to life the conceptual drawings of the Teetertotter Wall from 2009 in an event filled with joy, excitement, and togetherness at the border wall."
Architect Ronald Rael carries his seesaw project at the U.S./Mexico border.
(Source: images Ronald Rael Facebook page )