The Parthenon of Books, 2017.
Steel, books, and plastic sheeting.
19.5 × 29.5 × 65.5 m. Commissioned by documenta 14, with support from the Ministry of Media and Culture of Argentina.
South American conceptual artist Marta Minujín has just installed a towering new architectural installation in Germany called The Parthenon of Books, a scaffold replica of the famous Greek temple clad in 100,000 copies of banned books. The piece is currently on view in Kassel, Germany as part of a 100-day art exhibition called Documenta 14.
Minujín worked with students from Kassel University to identify 170 titles that have been historically banned worldwide by various institutions, and then sought help from the public to obtain donated copies. The books were then wrapped in a protective plastic coating to shield them from the elements while allowing visitors to easily identify each title.
An earlier version of The Parthenon of Books was first installed in 1983, referencing an event in Minujín’s native Argentina where books where confiscated and locked up as part of a military junta. This new iteration rests on a site where Nazis burned books by Jewish and Marxist writers in 1933 as part of a broad campaign of censorship.
The Parthenon of Books will be on view through mid-September and you can see more photos at the Instagram hashtag #parthenonofbooks. (thnx, Alice!)
If you have a late-night hankering for some felty gefilte fish or a bottle of fermented fabric, be sure to stop by 8 ‘Til Late, the newest temporary installation by British artist Lucy Sparrow known for her felt recreations of everyday objects. Located in Manhattan at The Standard, High Line, the bodega is filled from floor to ceiling with thousands of objects you might find at a typical corner store from breakfast cereals, a deli counter brimming with meats, frozen foods, and spirits—all made from felt and a bit of paint. And just like a real store, every last thing is for sale.
Over the last few years Sparrow has exhibited her felt objects in galleries and art fairs around the world including Art Basel, Scope Miami, and the New York Affordable Art Fair. 8 ‘Til Late is a companion piece to her 2014 installation in London titled The Corner Shop with a similar concept but with Eurocentric products. We have word that lines stretched around the block the last few days and every object in the store has since sold. While originally scheduled to be open through June 30th, the exhibition is ending early, specifically 10pm tonight. So if you’re nearby, now’s your chance. Maybe?
You can see the finer details of some 400 individual items from 8 ‘Til Late on Sparrow’s website.
World Tree, 2012. Soil, water. 10m (32 ft)
World Tree is a 2012 land art installation by Hungarian artist Krisztián Balogh. Dug into the ground like a network of roots or tree branches, the piece measures nearly 32 feet (10m) across and has the uncanny perfection of a digital rendering, though it’s most certainly a physical artwork. You can see more views on Behance.
Brooklyn-based artist duo Icy & Sot were recently in Tbilisi, Georgia where they installed this temporary piece titled “Nature’s Reflection” as part of Art-Villa Garikula. You can follow more of their recent work on Instagram, and also check out their recent book Let Her be Free that features over a decade of stencil work and street installations.
No, we’re not staring down the eyes of our new insect overlords, but you could certainly be forgiven for thinking so. Instead this is the latest artwork from South Korea-based artist duo Kimchi and Chips (Mimi Son and Elliot Woods) — a piece so thoroughly layered with technology it almost defies description despite being undeniably intriguing to witness. Titled Light Barrier Third Edition, the installation is the third in an ongoing series of works that utilize a vast array of projectors, mirrors, and speakers to present volumetric light forms which materialize in a foggy haze just above the work. From their artist statement:
In this third edition, 8 architectural video projectors are split into 630 sub-projectors using an apparatus of concave mirrors designed by artificial nature. Each mirror and its backing structure are computationally generated to create a group that collaborates to form the single image in the air. By measuring the path of each of the 16,000,000 pixel beams individually, light beams can be calibrated to merge in the haze to draw in the air. 40 channels of audio are then used to build a field of sound which solidifies the projected phenomena in the audience’s senses.
The artists share that over a period of six minutes the piece plays a sequences of images that “employs the motif of the circle to travel through themes of birth, death, and rebirth, helping shift the audience into the new mode of existence.”
A more compact version of Light Barrier was first exhibited in 2014 at the New Media Night Festival, Nikola-Lenivets in Russia. The much larger version of the piece seen here was shown last year in collaboration with the Asia Culture Centre. You can explore many more of Kimchi and Chip’s experiments with light on their website.
Update: Creative Applications just published a great article on Light Barrier.
Artist Lorenzo Quinn (previously) just finished the installation of a monumental sculpture for the 2017 Venice Biennale. Titled Support, the piece depicts a pair of gigantic hands rising from the water to support the sides of the Ca’ Sagredo Hotel, a visual statement of the impact of climate change and rising sea levels on the historic city. Quinn is known for his work with the human body—specifically hands—that he incorporates into everything from large-scale sculptures down to jewelry designs. Quinn is represented by Halcyon Gallery, and you can see more installation photos and videos of Support on Instagram. (via This Isn’t Happiness)