PEOPLE What makes good art? The answer is mainly in the eye of the beholder but if the ranking were to be decided by my little daughter, Olafur Eliasson would definitely be in the top ten. At the tender age of four she was deeply impressed by the visuals and special effects of his exhibition at Gropiusbau in Berlin. The art of Eliasson fits well with kids: standing in front of his distorting mirrors or playing in his rooms full of fog and shadows, gives the viewer a feeling of walking through a fairytale. It’s hard not to be moved (or impressed). Eliasson’s work is now well-established across the world’s most famous museums, but it is still based on a childlike curiosity with a strong exploratory urge. The blurring of room and art, inside and outside, fact and fiction are all themes at the core of his art. Like when he pumped an art museum with yellow-coloured fog or put toxic-looking green colouring into a Stockholm river. In the botanical gardens of the German city of Gütersloh he created a tunnel packed with intense smelling plants – a kind of positive scent attack – while in Utrecht in Holland Eliasson appeared to ‘change’ the location in which the sun went down by using a four-metre wide disk and special lighting effects. Back in Munich he created a monumental sculpture called Paraphrase in front of the headquarters of a leading consulting company, which showed two long flights of stairs, hugging and crossing each other. Eliasson’s 2008 project in New York City was hard to top – the installation of four artificial and spectacular waterfalls – which for 110 days, every day from seven o’clock in the morning until 10pm gushed 13 billions litres of water into the East River. Standing in front of this artwork, you got the strong impression of a crazy world which had changed its way of running. Most of Eliasson’s work has a similar effect – nothing is quite as it seems. But his big kaleidoscope of colour and light can equally be appreciated without thinking any deeper (thus the appeal to very young kids too). Indeed, it’s a sentiment that would seem to chime with the Dane himself. Talking about his recent 368-page vegetarian cookbook enriched with images of his artwork, he says that he appreciates “cooking as creating reality, not mystifying things”. Five years on, I’m sure my nine-year old daughter would agree. OLAFUR ELIASSON Nationality: Danish-Icelandic Age: 48 Job: Artist Bonus fact: Eliasson’s studio space in Berlin, Germany, is a converted old brewery which he calls The laboratory of arts BRIDGE OVER TROUBLED WATER (top) One of Eliasson’s most famous installations is his artificial waterfall under the Brooklyn Bridge, one of four installations built in New York City for 110 days in 2008 and involving more than 13 billion litres of water SOMEWHERE OVER THE RAINBOW (above) The giant 2011 installation Your rainbow panorama is a 150-metre elevated walkway above the roof of the Aros Museum in Aarhus, Denmark, made up of 116 discs which glow in 42 different colours to give visitors the feeling of walking over, or rather through, a rainbow 60 j THE DYNAMIC ISSUE
LIGHT OVER LONDON In 2003, for Tate Modern in London, Eliasson created The weather project, an artificial sun with powerful fluorescent tubes fixed at the end of the 35-metre high Turbine Hall. The space was made to appear even bigger with the use of a mirrored ceiling CROCODILE IN THE PARK? Looking like a giant crocodile awaiting its lunch, this 2007 temporary space was co-designed by Kjetil Thorsen and built in front of London’s Serpentine Gallery. The big ‘teeth’ formed a curtain behind which visitors sat, relaxed and maybe even ate their own dinner
Jaguar Magazine celebrates creativity in all its forms, with exclusive features that inspire sensory excitement, from beautiful design to cutting-edge technology.
In this issue, we explore the art of creativity from the Brazilian masters who devised the graceful art of Capoeira, to the Irish artists mixing new culture with old. You will also discover the creative line that links Victorian wallpaper to the iPhone. While the multi-talented actor and performer, Riz Ahmed, explains why it is the right time to reveal his true self to the world.
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