Tomas Saraceno

Tomas Saraceno

Psycho Buildings

Psycho Buildings

The exhibition ‘Psycho Buildings. Artists Take on Architecture’ in the summer of 2008, marks the 40th birthday of the Hayward Gallery. Opened by the Queen in 1968, it today belongs to one of Europe´s largest cultural centres as part of the South Bank Centre on the South Bank of the Thames.

Even back then it had more of a high security prison feeling than an art location due to the massive use of concrete – reason enough for curator Ralph Rugoff to get immersed in the Baroque Brutalism’. He invited ten international artists to live and work inside and out of the gallery for an entire summer.

The Argentinean artist Tomas Saraceno is presenting his installation ‘Observatory, Air-Port-City, 2008’ on the central sculpture terrace. With the help of a special construction of the geodesic structure by ZENDOME and a completely transparent membrane, Saraceno has created a gigantic ‘Air-City’.

Visitors enter the gigantic transparent space within a space through outside stairs, can then explore its possibilities and indulge in its special ambience. When facing downwards they can see themselves in the huge mirror at the base of the first level.

Saraceno sees ‘Air-Port-City’ as a kind of flying airport, a habitable platform which floats in the air like a cloud and constantly changes its shape. When asked about the Utopian feel of his project he answers: “Utopia exists as long at is created. Was it not considered utopian a hundred years ago for people to be able to travel in planes? And today 500 million people fly every year… The concept of Utopia is constantly changing according to the current Age. With my work I try to explore and interpret contemporary reality by using technological innovation for new social goals.”

Further Information:
Exhibition 'Psycho Buildings'

The 'Psycho Building'-Catalogue is published by Hayward Publishing (ISBN-Nummer 978 1 85332 268 6).

View of an artist

We thank the photographers for granting us the images and photo material:

Magdalena Rakita (Bild No. 1) 
Nils Vik
(Picture No. 2) 
Barbara Cinotti (Bild No. 3)
Stephen White (Bild No. 4, 7, 8. Tomas Saraceno. Observatory, Air-Port-City, 2008. Mixed media. Courtesy the artist and Tanya Bonakdar Gallery, New York)
trebortheklaf (Bild Nr. 5, 6) 

Many thanks to all the photographers who visually documented and shared their impressions of the dome sculpture 'Observatory, Air-Port-City, 2008' by Thomas Sarceno at Flickr.

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