Unusual Triptych

Three unusual art installations at Harvard by Ai Weiwei, Olafur Eliasson, and Tomás Saraceno

<i>Untitled</i> by Ai Weiwei
<i>Untitled</i> by Ai Weiwei
<i>Three to now</i> by Olafur Eliasson
<i>Three to now</i> by Olafur Eliasson
<i>Three to now</i> by Olafur Eliasson
<i>Cloud City</i> by Tomás Saraceno
<i>Cloud City</i> by Tomás Saraceno
<i>Cloud City</i> by Tomás Saraceno

Three art installations now on view at Harvard under the collective title "The Divine Comedy" are attracting attention, including an article in the Boston Globe by architecture critic Robert Campbell ’58, M.Arch. ’67, and this admiring description in New Scientist. In a quadrangle on Oxford Street at the Northwest Science Building stands Untitled, by dissident Chinese artist Ai Weiwei, a global figure in the art world who was arrested on April 3 and whose whereabouts are currently unknown.  It comprises nine large piles of children's backpacks—5,335 in all—each pack representing a child killed in a 2008 earthquake in China. There is also an audio track reciting the name of each child.  Three to now, by Berlin-based Danish/Icelandic artist Olafur Eliasson,  on the ground floor gallery of Gund Hall, includes 54 objects that invite the visitor to interact with them and play on our visual and spatial perceptions, like a convex mirror that inverts images. Cloud City, a large transparent balloon with solar panels (that power four tiny LED lights) inside, by Argentina native Tomás Saraceno, is on a roof terrace at the Carpenter Center. The Graham Gund Exhibition Fund underwrote the exhibition, which was mounted by the Graduate School of Design and the Harvard Art Museums. It runs until May 17. 

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