Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Cai Guo-Qiang

This work, though captured in its visual interest in this photograph, is greatly misrepresented two dimensionally.  Cai Guo-Qiang's exploding car series is ineffably brilliant in person.  The scale alone of this work is something at which to marvel, suspending life size cars from the ceiling in dynamic positions.  Not only is motion purely captured in this installation, but the force of gravity is seemingly highlighted as the star of the show.  He utilizes many tools to create this intense, imminent sense of motion and flight.   For each individual series (only one captured here at the Guggenheim), identical cars were used in repetition to create the illusion that a single car was spinning through the air.  The particular placement of the cars in space also provides a time line to the car's trajectory, a sequence to its descent.  The neon lights emanating from each car add to the overall dynamism of the piece.  They act almost as lines of force for the energy of the car, which seems to be trying to escape its metal confines.  Interestingly, Guo-Qiang's work does not evoke a sense of destruction despite the logical consequence of the car's trajectory.  

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