LONDON.- Acute Art
presents WUNDERKAMMER, a new AR project by acclaimed artist Olafur Eliasson.
WUNDERKAMMER is an intriguing collection of natural elements, small artworks, and experiments from the artists studio rendered in augmented reality. These AR collectibles meld the well-known with startling movement and unexpected actions from a glowing sun and a shimmering rainbow to a cloud that emits rain. Some evoke contemplation while others are humorous.
Presented at a time where movement and physical togetherness are restricted, WUNDERKAMMMER invites you to sculpt your immediate environment by adding objects and atmospheres to your personal space. In the first collection of objects to be released, you will additionally find a friendly-looking puffin; a floating compass that always returns to true north; an insect; and a Little Sun, Eliassons solar-powered lantern, that can be charged by the AR sun. As the project evolves, Eliasson will add more ephemeral phenomena and artistic experiments to the collection.
Daniel Birnbaum, director of Acute Art, said: I am thrilled that Olafur Eliasson is exploring the visual possibilities of this new medium with us. No artist alive today has given the mechanics of our perceptual processes more thought, and this is just the first chapter of an excursion that will reveal the artistic potential of augmented reality. With a keen interest in science and technology, Olafur has developed a visionary universe of his own. Since the early 1990s he has surprised audiences across the globe with works that remind us of the wonders of the environment that surround us, often questioning dualisms such as organic/synthetic and natural/artificial. Today, new virtual dimensions have become part of everyday life. They seem to destabilize fundamental aspects of what we thought we knew about ourselves. Could one imagine a more exciting fellow traveler on this journey than Olafur Eliasson?
Olafur Eliasson said: Today, where physical distancing guides our lives, its as crucial as ever that we surround ourselves with things and atmospheres that really matter to us. All elements of the WUNDERKAMMER play a role in my life. Some are objects that we normally take for granted and I feel they should be celebrated like the wonders they, in fact, are. Other elements in the collection will be more experimental, such as light sculptures and objects that are invisible to the eye until you catch them with your hand. The artwork is about challenging our perception of the everyday and actively welcoming that which lies on the boundary between the known and the unknown. It is about creating spaces that meld the everyday and the extraordinary spaces that evoke vivid perceptions and embodied engagement.
For close to three decades, Eliasson has explored how reality is a matter of continuous composition that takes place through active engagement with the world. Historically, the Wunderkammer composed a world out of the ordinary by juxtaposing unique objects and their narratives from science, the natural and animal worlds, archeology, ethnography, and art that expanded the boundaries of knowledge at the time of collection. It functioned as a space that evoked curiosity, awe, and questioning.
Eliassons interest in the Wunderkammer centers on it being a model for collecting and for probing the limits of knowledge, allowing us to question what we know and the stable parameters of our world; to reframe our values and beliefs; and to reassess our world view based on the wonders collected and the delight they evoke. The elements that populate WUNDERKAMMER tease our intellect and speak to our emotions. They present the contours of an imaginative space that may expand infinitely.
Most of the elements in Eliassons WUNDERKAMMER are free to collect; a few will be offered on a timebased acquisition basis. Throughout May, further elements will become available.