Silent protest, Art installation: workers’ hard hats, Milan

hats from above

This is one of the most arresting displays of public art I’ve seen for a long time, and even more so due to its simplicity: yet it carries a powerful, straightforward message.

The regimented lines of yellow hard hats arranged outside the stock exchange in Milan, Italy on 13 February were placed there to symbolise the devastated Italian construction industry as part of the construction association’s ‘Day of Anger’; the lost jobs and many defunct businesses, all due to the recession of the past five years.

hats from above 2

hats on ground

more hats

Pictures courtesy of Milano TodayCorriere Milano

It’s striking how one piece of everyday kit can be amassed to pack such a visual and symbolic punch.

The mass of hard hats reminded me of Antony Gormley‘s stunning Field for the British Isles, where thousands of tiny terracotta figures face the observer….

Field for the British Isles

Any thoughts on this kind of art? Let me know…

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