French artist and photographer Charles Pétillon has just unveiled a cumulus cloud composed of 100,000 white balloons illuminated from the inside at London’s Covent Garden. Titled ‘Heartbeat,’ the installation was created as part of the upcoming London Design Festival and stretches the length of the South Hall ceiling of the Market Building. Pétillon is known for his use of white balloons to fill unusual spaces, a photographic series he refers to as Invasions. This is by far his largest installation to date and his first public art piece. He shares about Heartbeat:
The balloon invasions I create are metaphors. Their goal is to change the way in which we see the things we live alongside each day without really noticing them. With Heartbeat I wanted to represent the Market Building as the beating heart of this area – connecting its past with the present day to allow visitors to re-examine its role at the heart of London’s life.
Each balloon has its own dimensions and yet is part of a giant but fragile composition that creates a floating cloud above the energy of the market below. This fragility is represented by contrasting materials and also the whiteness of the balloons that move and pulse appearing as alive and vibrant as the area itself.
The installation will be on view through September 27, 2015, and you can watch a timelapse video of its construction and an interview with Pétillon below.
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