Forma

spectra

spectra is a series of large scale installations by artist Ryoji Ikeda employing intense white light as a sculptural material. The installations are designed in response to specific gallery spaces or public sites selected by the artist. White light is one of the purest forms of transformation from electricity. We see a pure state of energy. Through these installations visitor's witness how this pure transformation alters the environment itself as well as oneself.

White light includes the full colour spectrum. With the light-installation, the visitor receives colour information into their eyes instantly and so intensely that they are unable to see anything, just like in darkness. The installation therefore becomes almost invisible. Consequently, the art works provoke a feeling of something indescribable, something sublime and unearthly, something unforgettable.


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spectra

Ryoji Ikeda
2004

spectra is a series of large scale installations by artist Ryoji Ikeda employing intense white light as a sculptural material. The installations are designed in response to specific gallery spaces or public sites selected by the artist. White light is one of the purest forms of transformation from electricity. We see a pure state of energy. Through these installations visitor's witness how this pure transformation alters the environment itself as well as oneself.

White light includes the full colour spectrum. With the light-installation, the visitor receives colour information into their eyes instantly and so intensely that they are unable to see anything, just like in darkness. The installation therefore becomes almost invisible. Consequently, the art works provoke a feeling of something indescribable, something sublime and unearthly, something unforgettable.

  • Credits

    spectra [nagoya] was commissioned by Aichi Triennale, 2010. Curated by Akira Tatehata. Produced by Forma.

    spectra [barcelona] was commissioned by Grec Barcelona Festival and Sonár, 2010. Produced by Forma.

    spectra [paris] was commissioned by Nuit Blanche and the City of Paris, 2008. Curated by Hervé Chandès and Ronald Chammah. Produced by Le Troisième Pôle / Eva Albarran & Co. Co-produced by Forma.

    spectra [amsterdam] was commissioned for Dream Amsterdam 2008. Produced by Forma.

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Installation view, Ryoji Ikeda, spectra [Terminal 5, JFK] 2004, JFK Airport Terminal 5, New York, USA. Photo: Dean Kaufman

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Spectra [for Terminal 5, JFK]

Commissioned for the luminal tunnel of Eero Saarinen's TWA Terminal at JFK International Airport as part of Terminal 5, an exhibition curated by Rachel K. Ward. 

With it's plunging vanishing point and soaring roofline, Saarinen's theatrical passage embodied, if not created, Utopian ideals of transcendence and transportation in travel. The installation offers visitors a special phenomenon. It is nearly invisible due to its intense brightness and inaudible due to its ultra-frequencies. Visitors can barely recognise the dimensions of the space, as if they were blind in a whiteout state. As they pass through the corridor, subtle oscillation patterns occur around their ears, caused by their own movements interfering with the sounds. The sound is subtle and minimal, yet the experience of the sound in the installation is active and dynamic. It is therefore only through the public's physical engagement in the sound space that the real character of the work can be perceived.

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Installation view, Ryoji Ikeda, spectra [paris] 2008, Tour Montparnasse, Paris, France​. Photo: Marc Domage

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Installation view, Ryoji Ikeda, spectra [paris] 2008, Tour Montparnasse, Paris, France​. Photo: Marc Domage

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Installation view, Ryoji Ikeda, spectra [nagoya] 2010, Ninomaru Square, Nagoya Castle, Aichi, Japan. Photo: Marc Domage

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Installation view, Ryoji Ikeda, spectra [barcelona] 2010, Theatre Grec, Barcelona, Spain. Photo: Fernando Aliaga

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spectra is a large-scale installation of sixty-four powerful lighting devices projected vertically up into the sky. The sculpture of light can be seen from all points in the city, its illumination changing constantly as clouds pass by. As visitors approach, they will receive colour information into their eyes instantly and due to the intense brightness, the installation becomes almost invisible.

At the base of the sculpture, visitors can walk through the grid of light, which is filled with sinewaves. These waves are ultra-pure, forming invisible sound patterns whose source is indecipherable by the ear. The emitted sinewaves interfere with one another as visitors walk through the grid, causing subtle oscillations around the ears of each individual. A musical score is thus created for each person as they move through the space, creating an entirely unique and personal experience for each visitor.

Ryoji Ikeda is a Japanese sound and visual artist living and working in Paris, France and Kyoto, Japan. Ikeda has gained an international reputation as one of the few artists working convincingly across both visual and sonic media. He elaborately orchestras sound, visuals, materials, physical phenomena and mathematical notions into immersive live performances and installations. Alongside musical activity, Ikeda has been working on long-term projects through live performances, installations, books and CD’s such as datamatics (2006-), test pattern (2008-), spectra (2001-), cyclo (a collaborative project with Carsten Nicolai), superposition (2012-), supersymmetry (2014-) and micro | macro (2015-). Ryoji Ikeda is represented by Almine Rech Gallery.

Previous presentations

2010

Ninomaru Square, Nagoya Castle, Aichi, Japan
Grec Barcelona Festival and Sonár, Theatre Grec, Barcelona, Spain

2008

Nuit Blanche, Tour Montparnasse, Paris, France
Kop van het Java Eiland, Vondel Park Music Pavilion, Van Gogh Museum and Westergasfabriek Water Bassins, Amsterdam, Netherlands

 

2004

JFK Airport Terminal 5, New York, USA

Background image: Installation view, Ryoji Ikeda, spectra [paris] 2008, Tour Montparnasse, Paris, France. Photo: Marc Domage