SANTA FE, NM – Santa Fe Police are investigating the vandalism of a public art sculpture that was set on fire on Saturday night.
New Mexico-based artist Tiger Mashaal-Lively’s “The Solacii” was installed at Form & Concept in Santa Fe at the end of July.
On Saturday night, Santa Fe firefighters put out a blaze that destroyed the sculpture outside Form & Concept, located at 435 S. Guadalupe Street.
Sandy Zane, owner of Form & Concept, and Jordan Eddy, director of the gallery, said they were deeply saddened by the intentional destruction of the artwork.
“’The Solacii’ represents a remarkable effort by Mashaal-Lively, collaborating artist Anstazia Louise Aranaga and countless people who have contributed to the monumental project,” Zane and Eddy said in a statement.
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“The Solacii” is a queer, Afro-futuristic expression of comfort and reassurance by a local artist of color, and its burning is an undeniable act of violence against the artist and a considerable cross section of their community, Zane and Eddy said.
According to Form & Concept, the sculpture symbolizes a process of community mourning as artists wove the dresses from personal clothing and heirlooms donated by friends, family and community members.
“We sincerely hope that a dialogue will emerge from this incident on how Santa Fe as a community can embrace, support and uplift Mashaal-Lively and artists like them who have offered their art to us,” Zane and Eddy said in a statement. “We believe there is a collective responsibility to support accessible public art, especially by queer artists of color.”
“The Solacii” debuted at Burning Man in 2017 and was set up in Santa Fe for the Mashaal-Lively show closing.