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German artist Katharina Grosse has altered the Carriageworks in Sydney with her mega site-specific installation that completely wraps the interior of the industrial building in brightly painted fabric. The results are not just transformative of the space, but also of our appreciation and engagement with the art.
Interested in how painting can exist beyond hanging on a wall as a two dimensional object, Katharina Grosse creates enormous kaleidoscopically coloured paintings that encompass the environments they inhabit – often in their entirety – so the viewer becomes both observer and participant.
As part of the the Sydney Festival 2018, Carriageworks unveiled Grosse’s The Horse Trotted Another Couple of Metres, Then it Stopped, a major new work – the most ambitious Schwartz Carriageworks commission to date – that responds to the gallery’s industrial architecture.
Painting in situ with a spray gun, Grosse covered 8,250 square metres of fabric that has been draped, knotted and hung throughout the former 19th-century Eveleigh Rail Yard of the contemporary multi-arts venue. The result is an all-encompassing immersion into swathes of colour that eliminates any distinction of specific architectural space.
‘I was fascinated by the thought of folding space,’ said Grosse of her approach to the commission. ‘I was interested in taking this vast surface and shrinking it by folding or, actually, hiding the entirety of what’s there. I understand a painting as something that, as we view it, travels through us and realigns our connections with the world.’
The Horse Trotted Another Couple of Metres, Then it Stopped follows the same lineage as her previous major projects such as Asphalt Air and Hair at ARoS Triennial in Denmark, Rockaway! in New York and most recently This Drove My Mother Up The Wall at South London Gallery in London.
The renowned artist creates a new perspective of the heritage building, transforming its concrete and metal form into an immersive stage. Grosse’s use of a bold raw colour palette dominates as it washes across the suspended fabric in Carriageworks making distinguishable space disappear and creating a circular experience of painting that you’re quite literally invited to step inside of.
Katharina Grosse: The Horse Trotted Another Couple of Metres, Then it Stopped is at Carriageworks, 245 Wilson St, Eveleigh NSW 2015, Australia until April 8, 2018.
Want to see more major art commissions? See Superflex’s transformation of Tate Modern’s Turbine Hall