Shia LaBeouf

An exhibit by actor Shia LaBeouf that lambasted President Donald Trump has been shut down because it had turned into “a flashpoint for violence”.

The piece of performance art encouraged the public to say “He will not divide us” into a camera mounted outside the Museum of the Moving Image in New York.

The Transformers star was arrested after a fracas at the site, which police began manning round the clock.

The actor criticised the museum’s decision to shut down the exhibit.

On Twitter, he posted an image of the live stream, which now reads: “The museum has abandoned us.”

Jaden Smith
Image captionThe actor Jaden Smith has also appeared on the live stream

LaBeouf co-founded the project, which was launched on the day President Trump was inaugurated, on 20 January, with artists Luke Turner and Nastja Ronkko.

The live-stream ran for 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and the artists had planned to maintain it throughout Mr Trump’s presidency.

But in the early hours of 26 January, LaBeouf was charged with assault and harassment after a confrontation with a man that was broadcast on the live-stream.

The New York Daily News reported that a number of white supremacists turned up at the site over the past three weeks, including one apparently wearing a Nazi hat.

In a statement, the museum said the atmosphere at the exhibit, named HEWILLNOTDIVIDE.US, “deteriorated markedly” after LaBeouf’s arrest.

There had been “dozens of threats of violence and numerous arrests” and it had become “a flashpoint for violence”, it added.

“Until public safety concerns overrode the intent of the installation, HEWILLNOTDIVIDE.US generated an important conversation allowing interaction among people from many backgrounds and with different viewpoints,” the museum said.

A statement on the exhibit’s website says: “On February 10, 2017, the Museum of the Moving Image abandoned the project. The artists, however, have not.”