The Lufthansa Group's decision to turn the Aviation Center into a place of art is first and foremost something that was intended to be for the benefit of its employees and, at the same time, to act as a homage to the arts. The building is supposed to be more than just a place of work.
Even during the construction phase, a concept that was as unusual as it was innovative was developed in close cooperation between architect Christoph lngenhoven and curators Max Hollein and Nicolaus Schafhausen. The concept was not based on the idea of a collection or a sculptural application of works of art within the open spaces of the building, but on the selection of seven artists who are able to react to the building and the Lufthansa Group through their work process and their artistic approach.
This is how new works that were developed specifically for this building have emerged; they have now become an integral part of the building:
They are works of art that refer both to the architecture of the Aviation Center and to the identity of its users. They are works that alter spaces, question structures or reorient perspectives, works that challenge people to pause and wonder, to reflect, and to engage in dialogue.
For his 2005 work "Lichtung/Clearing", Thomas Demand attached 770,000 individual sheets to paper trees for his image of a group of trees in the park of the Venice Biennale; he then photographed them and installed the work next to the actual park as a kind of trompe l'oeil. His work entitled "Forest" and exhibited in the LAC works on the same principle.
The sine curve, which is at the center of the mosaic designed by Nicolai, is a recurrent motif in his work. Nicolai, who works in the field of electronic music as well as fine art, measures the natural frequencies of the building and translates them into sinusoids, which are then transferred in the form of inlay work into the granite of the main axis. This results in a kind of DNA, a code for the building.
Cerith Wyn Evans's work entitled Intervention is located in the atrium called "The Beach". His light installations establish a direct relationship between the inner and outer worlds.
Beat Streuli photographs streams of people in the streets of the metropolises of this world. Unnoticed by him, pedestrians go past his camera. Streuli captures the moments when these people seem introspective and unaware of their impact on others. The result looks like a marketing campaign for the human being par excellence.
With their work, Elmgreen and Dragset dedicate themselves to dealing with the identity of the Lufthansa Group as an orderly and formal company. With their seven dysfunctional doors, it is precisely this identity that they call into question.
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