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N.C. art museum installs new pig-shaped play piece

Posted March 13

Jaime Hayon, SCULPT. C, 2016, painted wood and metal, H. 117.3 x W. 288.2 x D. 94.1 in., North Carolina Museum of Art, Gift of the family of Bill and Holly Blanton; Photo: John Paul Floyd, Courtesy of High Museum of Art, Atlanta

This week, the N.C. Museum of Art will install a new piece of art that's designed to bring even more families to its 164-acre park.

Spanish artist Jaime Hayon’s SCULPT. C is an an interactive, colorful, pig-shaped play structure featuring a slide that's sized for children, according to a press release. The sculpture is being installed this week and will officially open for play on Monday, March 20. As always, it's free to visit the park. Once it's open, it will be free to play on the pig too.

It will sit permanently in the park's new Discovery Garden, which isn't far from the park's main parking lot off Blue Ridge Road in west Raleigh. SCULPT. C is one in a series of large-scale whimsical sculptures titled Tiovivo, which means carousel in Spanish. It comes from the High Museum of Art in Atlanta, where it's been on view for the past year.

"The Hayon pig will be a perfect stop for families and young children, and we look forward to seeing our visitors truly interact with the work of art and surrounding Discovery Garden," said Linda Dougherty, the museum's chief curator and curator of contemporary art, in the press release.

As part of the park's expansion last fall, museum officials said they planned to bring in more permanent and temporary works of art to the outdoor spaces. The arty play piece is one of two new works slated for the park this spring.

Jaume Plensa’s Awilda & Irma — a pair of monumental steel mesh sculptures shaped like human heads — will be installed the week of April 12 and will be located along the park’s new Promenade walkway on long-term loan, according to the press release. The heads stand 13-feet tall.

“These two sculptures could not look more different, but they will both fit into the park landscape perfectly: one adding an element of playfulness and color, and the other bringing a surreal, dream-like presence," said Dan Gottlieb, director of planning, design, and the Museum Park, in the release.

To celebrate both pieces of art, the art museum will host an evening of activities on April 21. Hoopla: Party in the Park will feature live music, food trucks, local beer and performers.

The art museum is looking for suggestions to nickname the pig. Check out the museum's Facebook post or tweet your ideas to the museum on Twitter at @ncartmuseum with the hashtag #NCMApig. On April 21, there will be a live voting booth to select the winning nickname.

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