Newsletter April 2010
April 2010

Final chance: Carsten Höller

Final chance! The new installation by artist Carsten Höller (1961) will be on view until 25 April. Several works were made especially for the museum.

Photo: Atillio Maranzano
Photo: Atillio Maranzano

Until 25 April 2010

Experience contemporary artist Carsten Höller’s extraordinary installations. In the museum’s largest gallery, with more than 1,500 m2 of floor space, he has applied a simple arithmetical formula that repeatedly divides the space and the objects in it into two, creating an entity that heightens the visitor’s experience: Divided Divided sharpens all the senses.

Carsten Holler (born 1961) specializes in carefully conceived experiments that play with the physical experience and the messages transmitted to the brain. In the floating room, for instance, the subtly moving walls upset your sense of balance. The division formula is used in this Swinging Spiral too, but in a spiral form. It looks like a snail’s shell, but it is a room where you can walk and test your equilibrium. The Flicker Films are another example of this sort of experiment. Almost identical successive images of African dance groups are projected side by side. The brain fills in the rest of the images and creates a moving picture in the viewer’s head.

Are those real mushrooms growing from the museum floor? Where Höller is involved, you can never be entirely sure. His background as a biologist is evident in the extraordinarily true to life replicas. They are compound mushrooms: half is a fly agaric (the familiar red ones with white spots); the other two fourths are different varieties. These Triple Giant Mushrooms vary in size from more than life-size to around one metre above the floor.

Birds singing in the museum? Seven canaries can be seen and heard in a huge mobile composed of seven birdcages. Höller has often worked with birds in his art in the past. He has also made a new series of extraordinarily detailed paintings of birds.

Would you like to learn more about the diverse interests of the artist? Please visit the World of Carsten Höller at our Kunst Studio in the entrance area of the museum.

Check ArtTube for the new video: Carsten Höller and Ranti Tjan on happiness and perception.