Sky Reaching Cube", 2002, The Sculpture Space, USA.
Wood, latex balloons, helium; 380x380x380 cm (12,5x12,5x12,5 ft).
Form loose freely is following the wind like a balloon. Energy of nature
decides, where empty, "potential" cube will follow.
In this project nature is being used as a "Ready-made" form
and as a necessary and complementary context as well.
Sky-Reaching Cube" is the one of the projects that starts up the
series of "The Koan's of Nature" and will be devoted to the
Unexpected in an open space.
An important aspect of my outdoor projects is nature that is being used
in the way as it normally is, showing its constancy, and - to a certain
degree - its fortuity and consequence. I believe that the equilibrium
of nature can be a base for obtaining our own human equilibrium. Changes
in nature are slow and non-dramatic, only exceptionally more impetuous
events like tornadoes or earthquakes take place. Does not the equilibrium
of nature, which we are part of, make us feel like being balanced inside?
On the other hand, we need deep refreshment of the mind so in my opinion
that's the reason why some kind of paradox should be involved in the project.
An example of external realization, can be a bridge or footbridge, an
object that permanently joins both banks of a river, curiously and finely
designed, whether from the engineering or architectural point of view.
Sometimes beautifully put into a given location, in high mountains over
a stream, or on lowland, joining banks of an idly flowing river. But let's
imagine an object, that looks like a bridge, made completely of profiled
wire mesh, with a system that is propelled by the wind, installed on masts
that raise and lower down the form continuously. The form will have an
organic aspect and will be transparent. (The idea of transparency that
perpetuates nearly my whole work and deals with philosophical, ethical
and ecological aspects is very important for me.)*1
The times when the object is lifted up or lowered down would depend on
accidental blowing of the wind, so powers of nature would decide about
this, we would say - potential moment of utility. (Of course, only potential,
because that wouldn't be an object for everyday usage). Object would work
accidentally and inconstantly.
In fact, such a "Footbridge of Nature", would be only for Nature's
purposes, because only Nature would be able to walk on it, because it's
powers would decide about the destiny and working of the object. (Similarly
other projects of mine, The Cloud Room or Sky Reaching Hammock" no
longer belongs to us anymore. Clouds took it in their possession. And
also,"Sanctuary", can be full of rubble, but not of human origin.
And what is "The Great Ear" project is listening about?)
In general my idea about outdoor projects is that they are left for themselves
in natural context, left for nature's activity and powers so they respect
their powers in a way that they are powered by them, literally and metaphorically,
Isn't that so that the model of a sculpture or other architectural realisation
like shouldn't be living organisms? Should not their ability to self-regulation
be treated as most important?
An architectural or sculptural object as a dynamic, self-regulating organism,
co-operating with nature. Lets shape the external form the way as to expose
it to the influence of nature. The self-regulating sculpture or architecture
- we have here practical aspect; co-operation with nature, can bring only
advantages. Ethical one; we must care about the world, the recourses of
which are much more smaller and restricted than we have thought up to
the present, and also cognitive one: we get deeper knowledge about the
environment we live in. There is an option nowadays to treat design of
external projects, no matter whether more complicated systems or simple
forms as a self regulating structures, co-operating and finally becoming
similar in the manner of operation to nature's activities.
Let's try to use the open space as a lens through which we look at culture.
the moment I'm working on the model of the project but simultaneously
thinking about different versions of it. For example lets imagine a huge
bridge-like object floating in the air and made of balloons, like little
cells of similar size filled with helium. Each balloon would be attached
separately to the ground and whole form sensitive to the wind could be
suspended over a little valley or a river. *2
I'm working on other versions, too.
Can a realisation placed directly in nature be different from it, or should
it rather be a whole with it? Being a whole with the real space it must
valorise it. (Perhaps, like in immense ancient buildings we should mark
the proportions of the object?) Great metaphors and grass on the meadow,
or from nature to symbol and from symbol to nature. Maybe the only significant
symbols in contrast with nature are transparent symbols (?!?)
(In this case we have a spirit or a phantom of the form that does not
hide or pollute the space. Do we have a right to hide anything?) We must
act as if we were transparent guests on earth, which in fact we are. In
other words, we should pervade and embrace the space in which we live.
It is strange, that anything can be done and is travelling. (There are
main tracts and smaller paths. Everything is of the same value.)Transparent
symbols appear to be an important choice in the face of nature.
We can assume that transparency, as a metaphor referring to human mind
is a certain cultural value. Not literally contained in Buddhist removal,
loss of an ego, as an unnecessary filter distorting our relation with
the Reality. Similar examples we can
find in Christian tradition (medieval mystics). Transparent symbol suits
to the form devoted and living the space. The form is not focusing on
itself, more often it's functioning as a dependent on natural processes
or can activate their perception.
The form being an embodiment of a transparent symbol does not change the
settings in which it is placed but is integrated with them. Not disturbing
these settings it shows their whole symbolic power - as it was supposed
The wisdom of nature spread out in the space is what is symbolized. An
artifact whishes to relate to this wisdom and to expose it. To expose
"through" the context of natural space the philosophical aspect
of our being-in-the-world as the world of natural process that we are
part of. The part originated in a long cycle of filo- and ontogenetic
evolution. The question arises here: could not the external form relate
to (join) the long evolutionary dance that takes place during ontogenesis?
Should not every fragment of a form be its centre? (As is the case with
living organisms or clouds?) The form treated not as an object but as
a kind of representation (embracing) of the space focusing on its dynamic
and energetic character. (We have here a simple metaphor of the world
as a whole). Could not any point of the space or cosmos be its centre
point? (Thousands years of civilisations and cultures from various parts
of the globe have a positive answer to this question.)
Whether the sphere of art shouldn't be a field of undetermined activity,
for example working of nature in a clear form? Symphony of chance, showing
order of cosmos. Why nature? Nature is a puzzle, still half-magic, half-impenetrable
scientifically space. Here important aspect of external form is a fact,
that is left to nature, devoted to it's rule, and not belong to us anymore.
Good form is like a spirit, which does not hold any tights, is like particles
of smoke traveling crosswise of time.
Footbridge of Nature", construction of masts made of steel, Version
made of balloons could be bigger than that (realization in the outdoor
would be much more easier and cheaper for maintaining).
November 27th 2001