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Check out Big, Red & Shiny, “a non-profit arts organization and online art journal [set up to] commission and publish articles, essays and reviews that explore the theory, history and reception of art in its current conditions.”

A tweet sent me to BR&S, where I learned about a special art installation that was hung in the MassArt courtyard on Tuesday.

Stephanie Cardon of BR&S writes, “This is the story of how one student’s year long effort has brought solace and joy to a community when it is most needed. In spite of the crystalline air and brilliant sunshine, Tuesday morning was dark for Bostonians near and far. … Yet, serendipitously, it was on this day that Leah Medin poured a sheet of gold, soft as a caress and reaffirming as a cheer, onto many wounded hearts.

“Her gesture was simple, but took months of planning and painstaking work. While carefully conceived, her sculpture unintentionally came to represent the soaring expression of spirit many of us so desperately needed to find that very day.

“I met with Medin to talk about the timely unfurling of her piece, The Gold Divide, in MassArt‘s central courtyard. For those who witnessed it, the hushed voices spoke of awe and wonder and hope. I was curious to hear how the sculpture had come about, and how its transformation into a symbol affected her.

” ‘What happened Tuesday was everything I wasn’t expecting,’ she said about the overwhelming public response. After all, Medin had been planning this piece for over a year. It all started during her junior year abroad in Amsterdam, where she would ride her bike all around the city. As she biked, she took in the sun and the air.

“The fabric — 440 yards of gold crystal nylon organza stitched in 57 foot long panels — was inspired by these outings, by the sense of freedom and exhilaration they contained, by the light.  …

“On the day of the Boston Marathon, Leah Medin was still hard at work in an empty school, putting the finishing touches on the cloth, reinforcing its seams. When she heard what had happened off campus, while she was quietly and solitarily working to meet her deadline, she had a moment of doubt. ‘I called my mom. I wasn’t sure I should stick with it. She told me that now more than ever it was important to bring something beautiful to people.’

” ‘I’ve been waiting for this for a long time. Then, all of a sudden, there were all these eyes on it. On my baby! It was touching the surface and reaching inside the buildings, caressing the people, running along the ground.’ …

” ‘A lot of people have come up to me and said thank you. I don’t even know many of them. We give each other hugs.’ ” More.

See more of Leah’s work at leahmedin.com

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