January 20, By Hannah Wulkan
Celebrity Jaden Smith kicked off a participatory art piece outside of the Museum of the Moving Image in Astoria this morning titled “HE WILL NOT DIVIDE US,” which will be in place to film people repeating the title phrase for the next four years to protest the presidency of Donald Trump.
To kick off the art piece, which is the work of actor Shia LaBeouf, Smith stood in front of a camera mounted to the wall of the MoMI at 37th Street and 35th Avenue and repeated the phrase, “He will not divide us.”
LaBeouf’s group, called Labeouf, Rönkkö & Turner, created the project, which consists of a camera mounted on the wall of the museum and the words “HE WILL NOT DIVIDE US” painted above the camera.
The project invites the public to repeat the words in to the camera for the next four years, and the video will be livestreamed on to the website http://hewillnotdivide.us/.
“In this way, the mantra ‘HE WILL NOT DIVIDE US’ acts as a show of resistance or insistence, opposition or optimism, guided by the spirit of each individual participant and the community,” explains the website.
Smith, an actor and musician and son of actors Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith, began standing in front of the camera at 9 a.m. and continued for more than an hour and a half. LaBeouf joined him at the site, but has not yet appeared on camera to repeat the phrase.
LaBeouf began hinting at the project by tweeting out the title phrase every day since January 14. Smith began tweeting the phrase January 17.