A museum in Queens has shut down an online art installation by the actor Shia LaBeouf, calling it a “serious and ongoing public safety hazard” after Mr. LaBeouf was arrested and the exhibit became a target for threats of violence.
The participatory exhibit, “He Will Not Divide Us,” was a collaboration between Mr. LaBeouf and the artists Luke Turner and Nastja Sade Ronkko. Intended as a rebuke to President Trump, the exhibit hinged on a video camera mounted on the outside of the Museum of the Moving Image in Astoria, Queens, into which passers-by were invited to repeat the phrase “he will not divide us.”
The aim was to stream online images of people repeating those words throughout Mr. Trump’s time in office.
After it began on Jan. 20, the exhibition quickly became a hot spot for politically charged confrontations, and the video camera caught it all. Mr. LaBeouf himself made several appearances. In one, he squared off against a man who made reference to white supremacist ideologies. In another, he was arrested and led away from the scene by police officers.
The museum cited Mr. LaBeouf’s arrest along with “dozens of threats of violence and numerous arrests” in announcing that it had closed the exhibit.
“The installation had become a flash point for violence and was disrupted from its original intent,” the museum said in a statement.
On Friday, the exhibit’s website had replaced its video stream with the words “The museum has abandoned us,” in stark white against black. “On February 10, 2017, the Museum of the Moving Image abandoned the project. The artists, however, have not.”
The museum said the installation had “deteriorated markedly after one of the artists was arrested on the site of the installation and ultimately necessitated” the shutdown.
It called the installation “engaging and though-provoking,” but lamented that police had “felt compelled to be stationed outside the installation 24 hours a day, seven days a week.”
Mr. LaBeouf is a former child actor who starred on the Disney Channel series “Even Stevens.” He appeared in the 2008 film “Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull.” He has more recently drawn attention for public performance-art projects, like one in November 2015 when he arranged a three-day marathon of all of his movies at the Angelika Film Center in Manhattan.
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