Fusing art with technology, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) and Snap Inc. have unveiled their final collection of augmented reality (AR) monuments, completing the multi-year LACMA × Snapchat: Monumental Perspectives initiative. Supported by the Mellon Foundation’s Monuments Project, the collaboration seeks to spotlight the rich tapestry of stories and histories from Los Angeles communities.
Launched on September 7, the latest collection features five poignant AR monuments that delve into personal lineages and the narratives of present-day communities. Highlights include Victoria Fu’s introspective piece on the Chinese Massacre of 1871 in Los Angeles and Yassi Mazandi’s evocative portrayal of climate displacement, drawing inspiration from a 12th-century Persian poem. Rashaad Newsome’s work stands as a tribute to the enduring spirit of innovation in Black culture.
Additionally, Rubén Ortiz Torres and Alison Saar offer thought-provoking pieces on the theft of bronze busts commemorating Mexican historical figures and a homage to women who have faced commodification throughout history.
Strategically placed across Los Angeles, these AR monuments can be accessed via Snapchat’s camera. For instance, Victoria Fu’s work beckons visitors at the Los Angeles State Historic Park, while Yassi Mazandi’s creation finds its home at LACMA. For those afar, all five monuments are available globally on Snapchat through the Lens Explorer or by scanning QR codes on LACMA’s dedicated website.
Michael Govan, LACMA CEO and Wallis Annenberg Director, shared his enthusiasm, noting, “This initiative brings to life our collective ancestral memories, prompting us to reflect on the legacies we’re shaping for Los Angeles’s future.”
To celebrate this three-year journey, LACMA is hosting an Open House on Sunday, September 10. This complimentary event invites the public to immerse themselves in all AR monuments from the three collections, engage with the creators, and partake in diverse art workshops.
The Monumental Perspectives initiative commenced in December 2020, with its inaugural collection of AR monuments unveiled in April 2021, followed by a second in April 2022. Each artist, in collaboration with Snap Lens Creators, crafted monuments that resonate with key moments and figures from the region’s rich history.