first came the aquarium phone booths, then the cement-truck-turned-disco-balls, car-cuzzis and ‘mobile phones.’ next up on benedetto bufalino’s list of satires is this resonating aquarium in collaboration with light artist, benoit deseille, and presented at fête des lumières 2017 in lyon, france. the festival of lights, so it translates, is famous for enchanting visuals, stimulating art pieces, cutting edge uses of new tech, and now, la pelleteuse aquarium, an industrial digger seemingly operated by fish.

benedetto bufalino aquarium
benedetto bufalino is a french artist who plays with the perception of everyday objects

 

 

they’re just chilling inside, not doing much, just swimming around and existing. perhaps they realize their ironic situation, perhaps not. maybe it feels like any other tank, or maybe they have an entire finding-nemo-style backstory that would soon resolve if only the levers in the machine weren’t unfortunately removed. sorry, marlin. it may not be the most beautiful aquarium ever created, but it certainly is one of the most unusual pelleteuses ever modified, making it a lovable work at the festival.

benedetto bufalino aquarium
this is yet another iteration of urban aquarium by the two artists

 

 

one thing fans of the artist can count on is the subtle bufalino flicks that make this another one of his humorous stories, rather than just another installation de lumière. placid men wearing hard hats and reflectors stand around the digger, as do familiarly boring closed-off fences and cones. it’s a scene that’d normally make you subconsciously cross over to the other side of the street, but this digger, to the success of bufalino and deseille, does the opposite.

benedetto bufalino aquarium
this is actually one of bufalino’s more subtle, less interactive creations

benedetto bufalino aquarium
this is just one of more than 50 lighting installations exhibited at the festival

benedetto bufalino aquarium
rarely do you see this many people staring at a digger

benedetto bufalino aquarium bufalino aquarium
like his other works, the unusual piece is presented in an ironically ordinary way

benedetto bufalino aquarium
check out more lighting design here

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