On July 29, 2019, a video allegedly showing several seesaws installed across the border wall between Mexico and the United States became viral in social media:
My heart ❤
artists installed seesaws the boundary wall, so US and Mexico children could play together.
Designed by architect Ronald Rael. This is so pure and so nice rockers installed by louvres in the border wall in New Mexico. However, this was not a permanent installation. From this point on, the rockers are no longer there.
California professors Ronald Rael and Virginia San Fratello first came up with the idea in 2009 to explore alternatives to a traditional border wall. Rael and Fratello launched the project in July 2019 with the help of a group of artists in Juarez, Mexico.
Rael published several photos and videos of the "Teetertotter Wall" on his Instagram page as well as a message explaining the idea behind the project:
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One of the most incredible experiences of my and @ vasfsfs career, where the conceptual drawings of the 2009 Teetertotter Wall come to life in an event of joy, excitement and togetherness along the border wall were. The wall became a literal linchpin for US-Mexico relations, and children and adults on both sides were significantly linked to the realization that actions on the one hand had direct consequences on the other. We thank all those who made this event possible, such as Omar Rios @ colectivo.chopeke for working with us, the Taller Herrería boys in #CiudadJuarez for their good craftsmanship, @anateresafernandez for the encouragement and support, and all those on both Pages have emerged, including the beautiful families from Colonia Anapra and @ kerrydoyle2010, @kateggreen, @ersela_kripa, @stphn_mllr, @wakawaffles, @chris_inabox and many others (you know who you are). #raelsanfratello #borderwallasarchitecture
The international playground was only open for about a day. A customs and border guard official told Forbes Heather Leighton, "There is no playground along the US-Mexico border."
"There is no playground along the US-Mexico border in New Mexico. On the evening of July 28, US border guards met a small group identified as a faculty / employee of the local university on the border wall. They had planked the wall and seemed to play with residents of Mexico while recording the engagement. The group removed the panels and left the area without incident after finding that there was no prior coordination. Agents have ensured that no people / goods were crossed during the encounter. "