A suspension of transparent nets hovering 80 feet over the floor of an indoor courtyard makes for a surreal playground for the brave, and a terrifying sight for those afraid of heights. Artist Tomás Saraceno created this 2500-square-meter installation at the Kunstammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen museum in Dusseldorf, Germany for visitors to explore.
The interactive exhibit invites museum guests to walk out onto the cloud-like nets amidst transparent and mirrored spheres, for the sensation of hovering in some kind of dream space. The steel wire construction spans the museum’s glass cupola on three levels.
The transparency of the nets make it look like the people engaging with the installation are floating when viewed from ground level or some of the mid-floors. “When several people enter the audacious construction simultaneously, their presence sets it into motion, altering the tension of the steel wires and the intervals between the three meshwork levels,” states the museum on its website.
“By virtue of its magnitude and radically, in orbit has no precedent in Saraceno’s oeuvre to date. Even visitors who do not wish to climb the net or hang suspended above the abyss, but who choose instead to explore the installation in exclusively visual terms are confronted with themes of flight, falling, and floating, are inevitably gripped by the archetypal emotions associated with these states.”
A previous installation by Saraceno, ‘On Space Time Foam,’ utilizes a similar effect with translucent PVC membranes at a museum in Milan. The work plays on the ‘mutual dependence’ that becomes necessary when multiple people are moving within the installation at once.