The Kunsthaus Zürich opens a major solo exhibition by Olafur Eliasson

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The Kunsthaus Zürich opens a major solo exhibition by Olafur Eliasson
Olafur Eliasson, Weather orb, 2020. Stainless steel, polarisation filters, plastic, paint (black, white), LED system. Diameter 120 cm. Installation view: Kunsthaus Zürich, 2020. Photo: Franca Candrian. Courtesy of the artist; neugerriemschneider, Berlin; Tanya Bonakdar Gallery, New York / Los Angeles © 2020 Olafur Eliasson.

ZURICH.- The Kunsthaus Zürich is presenting a major solo exhibition by Olafur Eliasson. At its centre is a new, space-filling installation that addresses a key issue of our times: the relationship and interplay between human and non-human actors on Earth. The exhibition is exclusive to the Kunsthaus Zürich.

Olafur Eliasson (b. 1967) is one of the most important artists working today. In a new, atmospherically dense installation developed specifically for the exhibition at the Kunsthaus Zürich that extends over more than 1,000 m2, the Danish-Icelandic artist speaks directly to the viewer’s senses. The central installation is accompanied by new sculptures and light works.

Developed in close dialogue between Eliasson and curator Mirjam Varadinis, ‘Symbiotic seeing’ tackles themes such as coexistence and symbiosis and aims to achieve a fundamental shift of perspective. Eliasson invites us not only to reflect on climate change – as a consequence of human action – but also to comprehend the human being as part of a larger system. He sets out to critically interrogate the relationship and hierarchy between humans and other species on Earth, and create space for other ways of living together. He successfully translates these complex theoretical deliberations into spatial situations that not only appeal to people rationally but also touch them emotionally and move them physically.

In the central work ‘Symbiotic seeing’, tiny whirls, currents and eddies form above visitors’ heads, as the mist reacts to the body heat and movements of the people standing beneath. Audio accompaniment comes from a specially composed sound score by Hildur Gudnadottir played live on a cello by a robotic arm – a gesture towards artificial intelligence and the creation of non-organic substitutes for humanity that will be new actors shaping our future. ‘Symbiotic seeing’ creates space for reflection and sharing: #symbioticseeing.

Olafur Eliasson is a socially and environmentally committed artist who engages in dialogue with politicians and NGOs. He was appointed a Goodwill Ambassador for climate action by the UN in September 2019. Eliasson is convinced that the language of art has the potential to get people moving. He is known for spacefilling works that prompt audiences to reflect on themselves and the world as they experience them. From his studio in Berlin, Eliasson has been working since the mid-1990s with a large team of specialists in fields spanning design, architecture, research and multimedia. In addition to the teams and workshops, the studio has its own kitchen in which meals are taken communally.

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