inner detail of ‘(n)arcissus’ images © marius watz

new york-based studio softlab (jose gonzalez and michael szivos) has sent us images of their most recent project ‘(n)arcissus’, a site specific installation designed and produced for node10. the piece hangs in the center of the stairwell at the frankfurter kunstverein art center in frankfurt, germany, measuring 9 meters tall, supported by two metal rings – one at the top of the stairwell and one attached to the lobby ceiling.

softlab: (n)arcissus installation view of ‘(n)arcissus’ at the frankfurter kunstverein art center 

the form of the installation is constructed from over 1000 laser cut panels of mylar and vinyl, and metal snaps. the shape of the pieces change in form from a square to an ‘X’ shape based on their position within the structure, and in relation to the space. two of these layers can change in reverse to produce a gradated color on the exterior.

softlab: (n)arcissus lower front detail

as a viewer enters the lobby of the space, it is unclear that the piece extends the height of the museum. it is only when the viewer enters the piece at the lobby level or ascends the spiral staircase that the full extent of the structure is apparent. both experiences are different due to (n)arcissus’ double skin. from the lobby the interior of the installation is reflective and produces a very narrow vertical space where the viewer is confronted with their distorted reflection, produced by the hundreds of changing panels. as a visitor moves up the stairs through the space, the piece creates a connection, tying the three floors of the gallery together through a translucent gradated shape, produced through the tension of the hanging surface.

softlab: (n)arcissus parts of (n)arcissus lying flat, waiting to be assembled

(n)arcissus design team included michael szivos, carrie mcknelly and charlotte vlerick with installation executed by brandt graves.

softlab: (n)arcissus views from both ends of the (n)arcissus installationsoftlab: (n)arcissus details

softlab: (n)arcissus view of the installation from one of the gallery levels

softlab: (n)arcissus installation process

softlab: (n)arcissus working around one of installations two supporting rings

softlab: (n)arcissus piecing the panels together

softlab: (n)arcissus the shaft of (n)arcissus waiting to be connected to the lower supporting ring

softlab: (n)arcissus piecing the sections together

softlab: (n)arcissus top view

softlab: (n)arcissus view of the lower inner shell where ‘X’ shaped panels overlap square ones

softlab: (n)arcissus technical diagram of ‘(n)arcissus’

softlab: (n)arcissus technical diagram of ‘(n)arcissus’

softlab: (n)arcissus 2D section of the installation