American artist Nick Cave debuted his enormous art installation exhibit titled “Until” in November 2018. The exhibition is hosted in Australia by Carriageworks and is their largest exhibit by a single artist to date. The exhibition runs until March 2019, and is free to the public.
The installation and overall exhibit was inspired by Cave’s long-time concern over race relations and gun violence in America and how these echo within communities throughout the world. The four-year development includes numerous installation pieces and is an immersive art experience for the viewer to engage with.
Cave’s centrepiece installation is a sight to behold as it hangs suspended within Carriageworks. Cave’s piece is an excellent (and enormous!) example of artwork that is not simply viewed, but experienced physically as well. The work allows visitors to climb above it using ladders provided.
The exhibition provides various mediums throughout the works to display its story, its emotion, and its reflection of our times. Nick Cave sees his latest work as “…a theatre set, or an elaborate community forum, as much as a work of sculpture.” He also views this exhibit as optimistic.
The exhibition is a multi-media work encompassing 5 distinct works: The centrepiece—Crystal Cloudscape, as well as Kinetic Spinner Forest, Hy-Dyve, Beaded Cliff Wall, and Flow/Blow.
Crystal Cloudscape is a mixed-media sculpture measuring 12 metres long and 6 metres wide, and weighs over 5 tonnes! This piece can be viewed from the top as visitors are encouraged to climb ladders, or in its entirety from a viewing platform. Viewers will see what makes up this voluminous sculpture—items such as tennis rackets, lawn jockeys, glass fruit, salt & pepper shakers, porcelain birds, toys, flowers, whiskey decanters, beads, crystals, and candelabras, along with images of guns, bullets and targets. Some of the items are American racist memorabilia.
Kinetic Spinner Forest
This piece of the exhibit is a metallic hanging mobile installation, creating a spinning “forest.” The materials for this piece are 18,000 metallic spinning garden ornaments that show either a bullet, gun, or teardrop at their centres. The reminder of the existence of guns and violence within communities is present throughout Cave’s exhibition.
Hy-Dyve is a video installation within the exhibition, showing 14 looped video channels simultaneously. The video projected onto the floor is crashing waves onto the coastline filmed by a drone during high tide at Sydney’s Little Bay. This video installation creates pull and drag from these waves to enhance the overall energy and motion, and to showcase emotions of anxiety and agitation. The motivation behind this piece is video surveillance and racial profiling.
Beaded Cliff Wall
The Beaded Cliff Wall was creating using millions of ponytail hair beads. This textile piece was created specifically for the Carriageworks Sydney exhibition. Again, visitors engage with the artwork by moving through it, between the curtains that make up this piece. Another massive work—it runs the length of the gallery walls and carries a message of protest against violence in communities.
A large wall of blue and silver metallic shimmering party streamers move in the breeze with the help of a fan in the Flow/Blow installation piece of the exhibition. The colours and movement create a wall of water that aims to cleanse and heal as part of the artist’s optimistic message of hope.