New York City’s Museum of the Moving Image has shut down Shia LaBeouf’s anti-Trump performance art exhibit, “He Will Not Divide Us,” after a number of violent incidents and threats. The installation created by LaBeouf, Nastja Säde Rönkkö and Luke Turner was a participatory Internet streaming performance located outside the museum in Queens.
“The installation created a serious and ongoing public safety hazard for the Museum, its visitors, staff, local residents, and businesses,” MOMI said in a statement. “While the installation began constructively, it deteriorated markedly after one of the artists was arrested on the site of the installation and ultimately necessitated this action. Over the course of the installation, there have been dozens of threats of violence and numerous arrests, such that police felt compelled to be stationed outside the installation 24 hours a day, seven days a week.”
LaBeouf himself was arrested at the installation early on January 26 after an altercation with a 25-year-old man. The police arrested LaBeouf on suspicion of misdemeanor assault and harassment. The HeWillNotDivideUs Twitter account tweeted: “For those of you who don’t know what happened. Shia was attacked by a nazi. Shia got arrested. Nazi got away.”
MOMI declined to comment beyond the statement. Representatives for LaBeouf had not yet responded to requests for comment Friday.
“We are proud to have launched this engaging and thought-provoking digital art installation which was experienced by millions of online viewers worldwide,” MOMI said in the statement. “Until public safety concerns overrode the intent of the installation, HEWILLNOTDIVIDE.US generated an important conversation allowing interaction among people from many backgrounds and with different viewpoints. However, ending our engagement with the installation is the most prudent path forward to restore public safety to the Museum, its visitors, staff, and the community.”
The livestream video player on HEWILLNOTDIVIDE.US is now a black screen that reads “THE MUSEUM HAS ABANDONED US.”