Friday, September 30, 2016

BEAUTY: Installation--Elmgreen & Dragset

Scandinavian artist duo Michael Elmgreen and Ingar Dragset installed Van Gogh's Ear at Rockefeller Center in Manhattan this year from April to August 2016. This 30-foot high ear-shaped pool on its side graced the Fifth Avenue entrance to the Channel Gardens. The Rockefeller Center website remarks, "By repositioning a pool in an unlikely place like the prominent Rockefeller Plaza, right at Fifth Avenue, the artists achieve a simple displacement of the kind for which they are well known, challenging our associations and expectations of a particular setting. The pool—re-positioned into the surroundings of urban life, tourists, skyscrapers, and businesses—seems like a foreign object that has somehow landed there in the plaza. The sculptural qualities of the object itself, from the curves created by different depths and the overall shape of the pool, to the protruding diving board, become apparent when it is singularly presented in this upright position, rather than dug down into the ground. Like Elmgreen & Dragset’s previous projects such as Prada Marfa (a Prada store located in the middle of the Texan desert), the swimming pool creates a feeling of alienation, and brings attention to its context by its very otherness."

It's a fun installation but I find their "Past Tomorrow" installation so much more compelling. Its immersive quality is cinematic and engages on a level far deeper than most art the video to find out.

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