In Orbit by Tomás Saraceno

Artist Tomás Saraceno’s installation ‘In Orbit’ will be on display more than 25 metres above the piazza of the K21, in Düsseldorf , Germany until autumn 2014, having opened June 22, 2013.  The steel wire construction spans the Ständehaus museum’s vast glass cupola, covering 3 levels, and features 6 transparent inflated PVC spheres of varying diameters, up to a whopping 8.5 metres. The installation is interactive, with visitors moving freely between the spheres on all three levels.

The installation facilitates interaction by observation between visitors far below on the museum floor and far above in the mesh, inviting contemplation of relationships, resonances, and synchronous communication. Within the web, visitors interact with each other through vibration, like its’ arachnid inspirations. They may act alone or as a group, changing the shape and spacial relationships of the installation as they do.

Primitive emotions such as fear and elation, associated with flight, falling and floating are evoked even in visitors who choose to explore the massive installation only visually while those who fully expose themselves to the adventure experience these emotions with even more immediacy.

Three years of planning, in collaboration with engineers, architects and biologists went into this, Saraceno’s largest, most radical and, elaborate work to date; the mesh alone weighs 3 tons, and the largest of the spheres, 300 kilos. The artist has made an extensive study of spider webs over a period of years, including several species. Other influences range from Jules Verne to Richard Buckminster Fuller, to utopian architecture, the binding force in Saraceno’s work. Each of his works to date is an element of the utopian large scale project Air-Port-City, a floating socialist-utopian dream city of the future, his response to the growing uninhabitability of today’s earth due to exponential population growth and multiplying ecological crises.

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Tomás Saraceno


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