• Ernesto Neto at the Art Exchange

    Ernesto Neto at the Art Exchange

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17 January 2001 - 14 February 2001

Ernesto Neto's evocative Stella Nave (Star ship), ESCALA's first project of 2001, was installed in the Art Exchange, University of Essex in January as a part of the season of Brazilian art that began in autumn 2000 with the exhibition Outros 500.

On the occasion of his exhibition at the ICA in London, Neto was invited to bring one of his installations to the University. Stella Nave is one of a series of installations created by Ernesto Neto called naves or ships. The triangular shape of Stella Nave evokes a star. The sensuous architecture is made of nylon, with its extremities stretched by poles secured by sacks filled with sand. The corners are tensed up to create an inhabitable space that is accessible through an orifice-entrance. The proposition was that of interaction. Visitors were invited to take off their shoes and enter the sculpture in order to experience it sensorially. Once inside, the space around was metamorphosed by the spectators' own weight, their movements altering the shape of the membrane around them. At the same time, the senses were heightened by the presence of organic substances hanging from the ceiling of the installation: cloves, anatto seeds and turmeric, whose vibrant scents connect us with an experience of nature. Sand leached out of the 'feet' that ground the installation to the gallery floor, and the spices trespassed their nylon capsules imperceptibly. The gallery space was transformed into a sci-fi set, a beach, a shelter-organism.

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