Is Chicago’s newest public art installation a political statement or just a conveniently placed new statue?
The answer to that question has gone unanswered – and that’s the point.
The statue, which features the words “REAL FAKE” in big, gold letters, was recently installed at the intersection of Wabash Avenue and Upper Wacker Drive – located across the river from Chicago’s Trump Tower.
Still, city spokeswoman Christine Carrino told the Chicago Tribune any insult or political assumptions are interpreted by viewers, saying “what’s wonderful about art is that it is completely open to interpretation.”
Carrino added in a statement to NBC 5 that locations for art were selected before the actual artwork was picked.
A spokesman for the mayor, Adam Collins, said "art at its best makes a statement."
"And this piece certainly makes a real statement," he added.
The sculpture is one of five public art exhibits being installed along the Chicago Riverwalk in conjunction with Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s “Year of Public Art.”
It was created by Chicago artist Scott Reeder and will remain on display until October 2017, according to the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events.
The artwork was previously displayed at Art Basel Miami in 2013. Given that it was designed before Donald Trump became president, it’s safe to say there likely weren’t any current political undertones behind its creation. The placement of the sculpture, however, could be intentional or simply coincidence.
Reed could not immediately be reached for comment.
It’s not the first public art piece to be installed near the tower.
Last month, a Chicago artist known for filling city potholes with his colorful and sometimes comical mosaics filled a pothole near Trump Tower with a mosaic of a Russian flag and “LIAR” spelled out inside.
Late last year an architect also announced plans to install four giant pig balloons to cover up the Trump name on the side of the Chicago building.
The White House has not returned NBC Chicago’s request for comment.