Daniel Arsham, ‘Perfect Ruins (Kyoto)’, 2013, Perrotin
Daniel Arsham, ‘Perfect Ruins (Kyoto)’, 2013, Perrotin

By incorporating various aesthetic fields like landscape and architecture into the domain of art, Arsham demonstrates how art wields power over other fields. The means he uses belong exclusively to art—landscape painting, the chiseling and carving of sculpture, representation and collage. In adopting this approach, Arsham sees the schism as the crucial cog in his relationship to architecture—a relationship initially based on attraction, and then on repulsion. He attracts, captures, and integrates architectural constituents, then graduall y pulls away by staging a kind of destruction. Through upheaval, intentional erosion and engulfment by a luxuriant nature reasserting its supremacy, the collapse of structures that have been ingeniously constructed highlights the triumph of the forces of art over architectural rationality.

About Daniel Arsham

Daniel Arsham employs elements of architecture, performance, and sculpture to manipulate and distort understandings of structures and space. Arsham became widely known at the age of 25 when he was asked to design his first of several sets for Merce Cunningham’s productions. His practice has been guided by a curiosity for architecture and structured space, stemming from childhood memories of seeing the wreckage of Hurricane Andrew in his hometown of Miami. Some of his best-known works include a series of installations that destabilize the solidity of gallery walls, such that they appear to be dripping, folding, oozing, or absorbing furniture; also figuring among his oeuvre are pixelated clouds based on photographs and rendered with hand-colored spheres, and sculptures made from granulated materials like crushed glass. He is also active as one half of the art and architecture collaborative Snarkitecture, along with Alex Mustonen.

American, b. 1980, Cleveland, Ohio, based in New York, New York