Indianapolis Museum of Art Commissions Ball-Nogues Studio for Efroymson Pavilion Installation Series
Los Angeles-based Ball-Nogues Studio to transform IMA
entrance pavilion with immersive, site-specific installation
INDIANAPOLIS, IN, The Indianapolis Museum of Art today announced that Los Angeles-based Ball-Nogues Studio will create a site-specific, architectural installation as part of the IMA’s Efroymson Family Entrance Pavilion series. Ball-Nogues Studio’s installation will be on view in the IMA’s main entrance from September 3, 2010 to March 6, 2011.
Bridging the disciplines of art, architecture and design, Ball-Nogues Studio is an integrated design and fabrication practice lead by Benjamin Ball and Gaston Nogues. The studio will create an immersive installation titled Gravity’s Loom that explores the space and structure of the Efroymson Family Entrance Pavilion. Gravity’s Loom, part of the artists’ Suspensions series, will be composed of an array of vibrantly colored hanging strings that span the entire pavilion and generate the appearance of a softly spiraling gossamer surface. This surfacewill twist, contort, and spiral downward through the atrium, transforming the architectural space and re-choreographing the flow of visitors to encourage new interactions with the museum. Each string in the installation will hang from two points on the oval perimeter of the Pavilion, forming curves that respond to the distinctive features of the IMA building.
In developing Gravity’s Loom, Ball-Nogues has allowed the properties and limitations of a given material—in this case, string—guide their work. When the array of strings is hung in the Efroymson Family Entrance Pavilion, it will take the shape of an inverted dome through which a patterned color composition will be revealed that represents the artists’ take on Baroque embellishment, Ball and Nogues understand the oval shape of the IMA’s Pavilion to be analogous to the dome of classical Baroque architecture, which historically incorporated surface decoration to blur the distinction between what is architectural, sculptural, and pictorial. The strings of Gravity’s Loom will be painted to represent the imagined plan for a traditional Baroque ceiling pattern—a three dimensional volume that will blur into billows of color and then snap into a focused geometry, depending on the viewer’s vantage point.
“Ball-Nogues’ installation will dramatically re-imagine the Efroymson Family Entrance Pavilion,” said Sarah Urist Green, associate curator of contemporary art. “Their singular approach—integrating concept, design, and fabrication—will yield an unforgettable and all-encompassing environment that intricately relates to the space as a thoroughfare and site for assembly and interaction.”
Ball-Nogues likens their method of fabrication to a 21st century application ofIkat, an Indonesian term for the ancient textile process of resist dye.A labor intensive method, Ikat involves the application of vibrant colors to precise locations on individual yarns that, when woven, form a blurry edged pattern. Similarly, Ball-Nogues will color the strings individually in precise locations by using four computer-controlled airbrushes that are part of a programmable machine of their own design. Called the Instal-lator 1 with the Variable Information Atomizing Module, the machine will paint over 30 miles of string and cut it to prescribed lengths determined by an integrated software system. The shape of the thousands of hanging strings will be computed with a mathematical formula, however the piece will be installed at the museum by human hands. Ball-Nogues’ installation will be a remarkable convergence of digital computation, machine fabrication, and hand craft.
“The series title Suspensions refers to the act of disengaging from preconceived notions and intellectual interpretations, if only for a few moments, to apprehend the work with untethered expectation,” said Ball-Nogues. “In the installation at the IMA, there is an intentional duality at play—at one moment the implied surface frames views of the building and then at another obscures it, creating a clouded perspective of the building beyond.”
Ball-Nogues Studio’s sculpture is part of the Efroymson Family Entrance Pavilion installation series launched in February 2007 and made possible by a $2.5 million grant from the Indianapolis-based Efroymson Fund. The works are installed on a rotating basis with a new commission from a different artist approximately every six months. Artists who have previously exhibited in the space include Tony Feher, Orly Genger and Julianne Swartz, among others.
About BallNogues Studio
Ball-Nogues Studio is comprised of Benjamin Ball (b. 1968, Waterloo, Iowa) and Gaston Nogues (b. 1968, Buenos Aires, Argentina) both of whom live and work in Los Angeles, California. They met as students at Southern California Institute of Architecture (SCI-Arc), Los Angeles, and are former employees of architect Frank Gehry at Gehry Partners. Ball earned his Bachelor of Architecture at SCI-Arc in 1994 and worked at Gehry Partners while completing his degree. After graduating, Ball went on to work as a set and production designer and art director for films, music videos, and commercials. Nogues earned his Bachelor of Architecture from SCI-Arc in 1993, and moved directly from school into a position in product design and production at Gehry Partners. Ball and Nogues joined forces in 2005 and since that time have worked collaboratively with wide variety designers, engineers, and consultants.
In 2006, Ball-Nogues Studio was awarded the Best of Category distinction for Environments for their installation Maximilian's Schell by ID Magazine. Ball-Nogues is the recipient of two Los Angeles AIA Design Awards and Interior Design Magazine’s Best of Year Award for their installation Rip Curl Canyon. In 2007, their installation Liquid Sky was the winner of the Museum of Modern Art / P.S.1's Young Architect's Program competition. They are recipients of grants from the Durfee Foundation, the Graham Foundation, UCLA Arts Initiative, Otis College of Design and United States Artists. In 2008, their site-specific installation Echoes Converge appeared at the 11th Venice Biennale of Architecture and they have exhibited at Bejing Biennale, CAPC /arc en rêve centre d'architecture Bordeaux, and the Hong Kong / Shenzhen Bi-City Biennale of Architecture and Urbanism. Their installation Feathered Edge debuted at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles in 2009. The partners have taught in the graduate architecture programs at SCI Arc, UCLA and USC. Their work has appeared in publications worldwide including The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, Architectural Record, Architectural Digest, Interior Design, Icon, Log 10, Sculpture, and Surface.
About the Efroymson Fund
The Efroymson Family established the Efroymson Fund through the Central Indiana Community Foundation (CICF) to continue its tradition of philanthropic giving to causes in the central Indiana area. The fund, which contributed the $5 million gift to the IMA that supported the construction of the Pavilion in 2002, was established to benefit several areas of interest including the arts, historic preservation, the environment and projects for the welfare of the Jewish people. It also has provided fellowships to support the work of emerging and established contemporary artists in Indiana.
Contemporary Art at the IMA
The IMA’s robust contemporary art program is evolving as a model for encyclopedic museums as they engage the art of our time. With a renewed focus on its contemporary collection, the IMA has been actively seeking the works of new and emerging artists through both gift and acquisition, and in addition organizing major traveling exhibitions and commissioning site-specific installations.
Ball-Nogues Studio’s new commissionwill be one of several contemporary art exhibitions and installations premiering at the IMA in 2010. Other exhibitions of contemporary art at the IMA this fall include:
Body Unbound: Contemporary Couture from the IMA’s Collection(April 17, 2010–January 30, 2011) will examine the many ways designers have manipulated, transformed and liberated the female form since 1960. The exhibition will feature iconic pieces of contemporary fashion, many recently added to the IMA’s growing collection of Fashion & Textile Arts.
Jeppe Hein (May 7–September 5, 2010), will be a multi-part exhibition of Copenhagen-based artist Jeppe Hein, consisting of a 4,000-square-foot installation in the IMA’s Forefront Galleries that will feature Hein’s site-specific work Distance, and anew outdoor experiential artwork on the museum grounds, titled Bench Around the Lake, for the inaugural installations in 100 Acres, opening on June 20, 2010.
About the Indianapolis Museum of Art
Encompassing 152 acres of gardens and grounds, the Indianapolis Museum of Art is among the 10 largest encyclopedic art museums in the United States, and features significant collections of African, American, Asian, European and contemporary art, as well as a newly established collection of design arts. The IMA offers visitors an expansive view of arts and culture through its collection of more than 54,000 works of art that span 5,000 years of history from across the world’s continents. The collections include paintings, sculpture, furniture and design objects, prints, drawings and photographs, as well as textiles and costumes.
Recognizing the inherent connections among art, design and nature, the IMA offers visitors experiences at the Museum, in 100 Acres: The Virginia B. Fairbanks Art & Nature Park, which will be one of the largest contemporary art parks in the United States when it opens in June 2010, and at Oldfields–Lilly House & Gardens, an historic Country Place Era estate on the IMA’s grounds.
The IMA completed a $74 million expansion project in May 2005. The construction added 164,000 square feet to the Museum and includes renovation of 90,000 square feet of existing space. In order to present major exhibitions of its own and to accommodate major traveling exhibitions, the expanded Museum was outfitted with new 10,000-plus-square-foot Clowes Special Exhibition Gallery on the Museum’s first level. In November 2008, the IMA opened the renovated 600-seat Tobias Theater. Nicknamed, “The Toby,” the theater is a venue for talks, performances and films.
Located at 4000 Michigan Road, the IMA and Lilly House are open Tuesday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Thursday and Friday, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.; and Sunday, noon to 5 p.m. The IMA is closed Mondays and Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s days. For more information, call 317-923-1331 or visit www.imamuseum.org.
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