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Yoko Ono To Be Part Of Olympic Festival Exhibition

Ono

First Posted: 12/12/11 02:37 PM ET Updated: 12/12/11 05:26 PM ET

Yoko Ono, the widow of Beatles' songwriter John Lennon is preparing for her first show in a UK public institution in over a decade. The exhibition, featuring new and rarely seen works, will take place at the prestigious Serpentine Gallery in London.

The show will coincide with the London 2012 Festival, a 12-week celebration spanning the UK that will showcase leading artists from around the world. The festival will take place from June 21st to the final day of the Paralympic Games on September 9th, as a sort of build-up to the London 2012 games.

The exhibition will feature Ono's SMILE project, an initiative that invites participants to photograph and upload an image of themselves smiling as a world-wide record of positive portraits. Ono hopes that "all of the smiles... that are collected will be kept by the Serpentine Gallery as a record for the planet Earth. When people take part in the SMILE, they will receive their own smile to take home."

Before meeting Lennon, Ono solidified her reputation as a ground-breaking artist working with the Fluxus movement, providing the loft space for John Cage's experimental music classes. In 1966, she met Lennon at her exhibition in London where they quickly fell in love. Her work focuses on audience participation and installation/performance pieces that show the inherent connection between participants.

Check out an interview with Yoko Ono and John Lennon about their artistic happenings below.

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Filed by Andrew Reilly  |