SAINT LOUIS, MO.-
Thousands of visitors to the recently expanded Saint Louis Art Museum
have written down their dreams and wishes as part of a participatory art installation created by Yoko Ono, the artist, musician and peace activist.
Yoko Ono: Wish Tree, which will remain on view through Labor Day on the Museums South Terrace, invites visitors to write down a wish on a piece of paper, and then attach the wish to a branch of one of three Japanese maple trees. Since 1996 Ono has gathered more than 1 million such wishes from around the world.
As a child in Japan, I used to go to a temple and write out a wish on a piece of thin paper and tie it around the branch of a tree, Ono has said. Trees in temple courtyards were always filled with peoples wish knots, which looked like white flowers blossoming from afar.
In St. Louis, wishes are periodically collected from the trees. At the end of this installation, following Onos instructions, all St. Louis wishes will be sent to her. Eventually, the collected wishes will be sent to the Imagine Peace Tower, in Reykjavík, Iceland, created in 2007 by Ono in memory of her late husband John Lennon.
Born in Tokyo, Japan, in 1933, Ono moved to New York City in 1953, following her studies in philosophy in Japan. A multi-media artist, she has worked extensively in performance, instructions, film, music and writing. Recently, her work has been shown in solo exhibitions at the Serpentine Gallery, London in 2012 and the Schirn Kunsthalle, Frankfurt, in 2013. In 2009, she received the Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement from the Venice Biennale. In 2011, Ono was honored with the prestigious 8th Hiroshima Art Prize for her dedicated peace activism. Ono exhibits with Galerie Lelong.
Yoko Ono: Wish Tree is curated by Tricia Y. Paik, associate curator of modern and contemporary art, and will close on Sept. 2.