Art News


MUST KNOW: Escape Artist: Giant Ball Rolls Down Streets, ‘Round Corners

Wind and rain conspired to set loose a gigantic inflatable piece of installation art, turning it into a kind of impromptu performance piece for drivers and bystanders as one (very big) red balloon rolled by. In some regards, the resulting viral sensation has taken on a life of its own, extending the reach of the sculpture far beyond its target audience. Designed to be a source of urban interaction, the RedBall was in the process of being wedged between two downtown businesses before being redirected by forces of nature. Museum staff, installation participants and a handful of bystanders chased the recently-liberated sphere down the streets, eventually catching it, deflating it and returning it to the installation site. Instagram user jeremy419 happened to catch much of the action from atop a nearby building. Meanwhile, a hacked version of video puts a fresh tomato-style spin on this unexpectedly interactive work of  art.

The museum’s director of communications, Kelly Garrow, recapped the sequence of events for reporters: “It started pouring rain, so the ball was wet and slippery. The wind picked up, and it popped up and just started going. You can see in the video that’s going viral that it rolled about halfway down a block and then mysteriously took a left-hand turn. It made its way partially down the street before people caught up with it.“ Despite its size (4.5 meters in diameter), the ball weighs only 120 kg, minimizing its potential for damage to one bent street sign. A world-traveling artwork, the ball was created by Kurt Perschke to be pressed into tight spaces and has been in play for nearly a decade without incident. Meanwhile, add this escapee to Nena’s 99 Luftballons lyrics and you get a nice rounded “100 red balloons go by.”

See the project and the cities involved here




MUST SEE: New Ai Weiwei bicycle sculpture installed in London

Ai Wei Wei’s new Forever sculpture has been installed outside London’s Gherkin building. The piece is formed of hundreds of steel bicycles, joined to form geometric frames and layers. The title of the work refers to the Forever brand of bicycles mass-manufactured in Shanghai, China since 1940, that are gradually becoming more scarce on the streets of the city.

Ai Wei Wei says: “These are mostly objects that relate to my small world. For example, the Forever bicycles were a brand from when I was growing up. In our village there were no real roads and we always had to ride bikes to carry things. I thought they would be a good public sculpture because people relate to bikes. They’re designated for the body and operated with your body. There are a few things today that are like that.”

The piece is part of the City of London’s Sculpture in the City programme.






MUST HAVE: Famous Paintings On High Heel Shoes. Only for high heels addicted!

Fashion is more than just what we put on, it is wearable art and designer Charlotte Olympia, who is famous for her quirky sense and eclectic taste, has taken this quite literally. For her new collection she has reinterpreted her famed Dolly platform pumps by taking a cue from the 20th century’s greatest artists such as Pablo Picasso, Howard Hodgkin, Vincent Van Gogh, Jackson Pollock, Roy Lichtenstein and Piet Mondrian. The shoes which have been created for luxury departmental store Neiman Marcus debuted at Art Basel Miami, making it a fitting way to celebrate contemporary art indeed. To get her vision to life, Olympia hired British artist, photography and body art painter Boyarde Messenger, who hand-painted all of the 100 pairs. The end result is chic and unique beyond belief!

Charlotte Olympia has really outdone herself this time and her pop-art collection is no less than a work of fashionable art in itself. It allows patrons of art and style to carry a piece of history with them wherever they go.



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