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date: 17 September 2019

Sky artlocked

  • Astrid A. Hiemer


Term coined by Otto Piene in 1969 and described by him as: ‘The arbitrator between man-made feelings and emotions and yearnings evoked by earth and sky and their overwhelming size and power …. Technology helps to distribute and connect while we keep it from dulling the senses and numbing our imagination’ (see 1986 exh. cat.). By the 1980s sky art had become a movement centred around Piene and other artists at the Center for Advanced Visual Studies (CAVS) at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Cambridge, USA.

Piene’s early but most ambitious sky project was the Olympic Rainbow produced for the XX Olympiad in Munich, Germany (1972). In 1966 Christo had produced his 42,390 Cubic Feet Package at the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, MN, which was a precursor of sky art. In the same year as Piene’s Olympic Rainbow he constructed his Valley Curtain, Rifle, Colorado (see...

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