tomas saraceno: 59 steps to be on air   solar powered hot air balloon
original content
feb 01, 2013
tomas saraceno: 59 steps to be on air solar powered hot air balloon


 


’59 steps to air – by sun power ‘ by tomàs saraceno
polypropylene, bike wheel rim, fan, etc.
dimensions variable
image courtesy tomàs saraceno

 

 

renowned argentinian artist tomàs saraceno regularly emphasizes his engagement with engineering and the biological sciences through
his monumental works, intersecting the worlds of architecture, art and physics with potent acuity.  saraceno continues his exploration
of habitation constantly operates at a threshold – with his latest iteration complete titled ’59 steps to be on air by sun power’.
the project is presented as a set of instructions that explain the sequence for crafting a hot-air balloon style flying device,
designed to float solely on the power of solar – using garbage bags, transparent tape, rope, bicycle wheels and other flotsam
jetsam materials to fabricate the structure.  the process is broken down into 59 highly detailed steps which you can download here.
with two people working, the undertaking requires about 24 hours to complete. here saraceno showcases the fantasy of ‘people afloat on the sky’ as an
immediate and attainable reality – a project able to be built by almost anybody in a single day. the concept was first revealed in 2003,
where the artist crafted the balloon and documented the functioning creation in the argentinian skies. shown in the format of an
installation at maison hermes in ginza tokyo, the prototype – fashioned from black garbage bags -  was able to be experienced
in a unique way, where visitors were invited to crawl into the interior of the balloon and explore the structure.
the work reinforces saraceno’s importance as a protagonist and catalyst for the development of critical social science –
interlocking concepts, materials, forces that include human and non-human agents as the ingredients for a greater, valuable social knowledge.

 

 


the work is designed to float solely on the power of solar – using garbage bags, transparent tape, rope, bicycle wheels and other flotsam jetsam materials to fabricate the structure
photo © atsushi nakamichi/nacàsa partners

image courtesy fondation d’entreprise hermès

 

 

 
the project is presented as a set of instructions that explains the sequence for crafting a hot-air balloon style flying device
images courtesy tomàs saraceno

 

 


with two people working, the undertaking requires about 24 hours to complete can be built by almost anybody in a single day
image courtesy tomàs saraceno

 

 


the prototype – fashioned from black garbage bags -  was able to be experienced in a unique way, where visitors were invited to crawl into the interior of the balloon and explore the structure
photo © atsushi nakamichi/nacàsa partners
image courtesy fondation d’entreprise hermès

 

 


photo © atsushi nakamichi/nacàsa partners
image courtesy fondation d’entreprise hermès

 

 


image courtesy tomàs saraceno

 

 


the first four steps of the ’59 steps to be on air’ – see the remaining detailed steps here
image courtesy tomàs saraceno

 

 

comments policy
LOG IN VIA
login with designboom
designboom's comment policy guidelines
generally speaking, if we publish something, it's because we're genuinely interested in the subject. we hope you'll share this interest and if you know even more about it, please share! our goal in the discussion threads is to have good conversation and we prefer constructive opinions. we and our readers have fun with entertaining ones. designboom welcomes alerts about typos, incorrect names, and the like.
the correction is at the discretion of the post editor and may not happen immediately.

what if you disagree with what we or another commenter has to say?
let's hear it! but please understand that offensive, inappropriate, or just plain annoying comments may be deleted or shortened.

- please do not make racist, sexist, anti-semitic, homophobic or otherwise offensive comments.
- please don't personally insult the writers or your fellow commenters.
- please avoid using offensive words, replacing a few letters with asterisks is not a valid workaround.
- please don't include your website or e-mail address in your comments for the purpose of self-promotion.
- please respect jury verdicts and do not discuss offensively on the competition results
(there is only one fist prize, and designboom usually asks renown professionals to help us to promote talent.
in addition to the awarded designs, we do feel that almost all deserve our attention, that is why we publish
the best 100-200 entries too.)

a link is allowed in comments as long as they add value in the form of information, images, humor, etc. (links to the front page of your personal blog or website are not okay). unwelcome links (to commercial products or services of others, offensive material etc. ) will be redacted. and, ... yes, spam gets banned. no, we do not post fake comments.

Hermès (18 articles)

product library