floating cloud installation by berndnaut smilde
floating cloud installation by berndnaut smilde floating cloud installation by berndnaut smilde
mar 01, 2012

floating cloud installation by berndnaut smilde

‘nimbus’ by berndnaut smilde

nimbus‘ is a seemingly impossible sculptural installation developed for the online gallery probe by amsterdam-based artist berndnaut smilde. beginning with the concept of a vacant or abandoned room and aspirations of enhancing this ominous environment, smilde introduced smoke, moisture and backlighting. the artist was able to create the entirely eerie and whimsical illusion of a cloud floating within the gallery space. smilde treats the sculpture as representative of his appreciation of physical presence found within transitional space; the viewer may only experience this environmental sculpture for a moment before before it dissipates entirely.  

‘you could see the cloud as a sign of misfortune. you could also read it as an element out of the dutch landscape paintings in a physical form in a classical museum hall. at the same time I wanted to make (for once) a very clear image, an almost cliché and cartoon like visualization of having bad luck: ‘indeed, there nothing here and bullocks, it’s starting to rain!”-berndnaut smilde

‘the idea I had was going to be an ephemeral work. it would only exist as a photo. I thought this would work very well with the idea of probe, as the exhibitions only exist in the form of documentation. I didn’t realize there is in fact a very physical aspect about probe’s presentation. the 9 different perspectives of documentation make it possible for the spectator to wander around the space and create the opportunity of visiting the exhibition. therefore with every shoot we had to make a new cloud and keep in account approximately the same lighting and position to create the illusion of physically walking through the space.‘ -berndnaut smilde

the artist recently exhibited an additional cloud sculpture known as ‘cumulus’ for HMK {Hotel MariaKapel} in the start of 2012.

via its nice that 

  • wish I could see that with my own eyes…

    CleMs says:
  • Amazing! We\’ve seen this kind of installations on the outside and in a larger scale – the Blur Building in Switzerland by Diller Scofidio. But……The introduction of this concept on the inside gives us a lot to think about! What if we could make it a part of our decor, our interiors? Imagine looking at the ceiling of your living room and watch a cloud, drifting and vanishing… could be stunning.. it\’s a very deep, emotional concept!

    Boca do Lobo – Passion is Everything

    João Lopes says:
  • it would look even better with a Tiepolo on the ceiling

    thierry lacoste says:
  • Fascinating concept! I wish I could have been there to see it in person!

    Christi at theartcake.com, an art blog

    Christi says:
  • Beautiful pics. However I think the other commentators don’t understand.
    As pointed out in the description, being physical present in the room will not give the impression of a real cloud. It will not hover, but only be there for a split-second, moving and dissipating very quickly. Think of a steam engine releasing pressure.

    airborn says:
  • The greatness is this fleeting moment put on camera as it were not a construct… but look at the so on purpose sky blue on the walls or at the fleshy red of the floor. The scale is another perception here altered with very good results on the \”natural\” effect.


    dora says:
  • This is Truly amazing! and how sophisticated would it be for more public spaces, I can imagine a cafe or a nice restaurant with floating clouds above… but that\’s being just too \”\”romantic\”\”.
    Anyway, I would like to see a video of this.
    Good work.

    Francisco says:

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