We collaborated with the Taiwanese artist Lee Mingwei to design a 3-story, 50-foot high, installation in the central atrium of Singapore’s Peranakan Museum. Luminous Depths is a site-specific installation that raises questions about how a museum curates its collection and the value of the displayed object, a very bold departure from other art installations that had previously been commissioned by any museum in Singapore. Two suspended, diaphanous volumes interlock and create layers of light and depth within the core of the museum. Fabricated from white ropes and steel hoops, the volumes float within the atrium. On the ground floor, they hover just above a self-supporting, 8-foot high shell of tapered, translucent resin panels that form a giant vessel in the middle of the entrance lobby.
On entering the ground floor lobby, visitors hear Schubert Lied (art song) being played from the top of the atrium. Visitors can choose and purchase a ceramic object (a replica of a historic museum artifact) and walk with it through the museum. At the top floor, visitors are invited to step onto a raised walkway to reach the edge of the installation that is suspended over the void of the atrium and toss their chosen ceramic object into the void in order to challenge their preconceptions of the precious, collected artifact. As the ceramic piece falls on the museum's marble floor, it shatters; the layered aggregation of ceramic shards during three months of visitor engagement reveals an archaeology of human interaction with the artwork. Funds collected from the purchase of the ceramic replicas will be used to acquire a new artwork for the museum collection.
Material Used :
1. white ropes
2. steel hoops
3. 8-foot high shell of tapered, translucent Acrylite resin panels