Breaking Down The Barriers: Santiago Calatrava and Frank Stella Unveil Never-Before-Seen Collaboration

April 13, 2011

NEW YORK, April 13, 2011 /PRNewswire/ — On Thursday, April 14th, artistic icons Santiago Calatrava and Frank Stella will unveil their first collaborative installation at the New National Gallery in Berlin.

(Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20110413/NY82724 )

Entitled “Stella & Calatrava: The Michael Kohlhaas Curtain,” this unprecedented work of art fuses one of Frank Stella’s monumental paintings – a 98 foot mural – with a Santiago Calatrava-designed steel sculpture. Not only is this the first time that the two icons have joined forces, but it is also the first time that artists of two different disciplines have used their individual work to create an installation that transforms two works into one.

Although Calatrava is best known for the arching sculptural forms of his buildings and bridges, and Stella is recognized for his use of geometric patterns and vibrant colors, both share a passion for transgressing limits. This installation is an opportunity for the two artists to show how the elimination of barriers between the different disciplines of art can create a unique artistic perspective.

“The beauty of this installation is that it plays with the human scale; incorporating the spectator into the painting as well as into the sculpture,” said Santiago Calatrava. “The canvas is painted on both sides, forming a continuum. By putting the canvas inside of the sculptural ring and enclosing it you almost get an infinite dimension because there is no beginning and no end.”

Not only does Calatrava’s torus-shaped sculpture frame and support Stella’s canvas, but it also maintains a respectful distance from it. Furthermore, the frame’s geometrical and transparent form provides a delicate contrast with the wide variety of colors and images that appear on the mural. The installation is suspended from the ceiling in order to convey a complex spatial experience, while providing an unobstructed view from all angles.

For Calatrava, the biggest challenge of the collaboration was determining how to create a copasetic relationship between the installation and its surrounding environment. “I have an enormous amount of respect for Frank Stella, as well as Mies Van der Rohe (who designed the New National Gallery),” said Calatrava. “Although I was designing a frame for Mr. Stella’s painting, I also had to take into consideration the location, which is inside of a space designed by Mr. Van der Rohe. Therefore, the frame needed to establish a link between the works of both artists.”

“Stella & Calatrava: The Michael Kohlhaas Curtain” exhibition will be on view at the New National Gallery in Berlin until Sunday, August 14th, 2011.

The installation will then move to the IAACC Pablo Serrano Museum in Zaragoza, Spain where it will be part of a larger exhibition of both artists’ works. According to Cristina Carrillo de Albernoz, the curator who conceived this collaborative project, a wide selection of paintings, drawings and sculptures will be on display, including several never-before-seen sculptures in motion created by Calatrava specifically for the exhibition. (Photos of the artwork appearing at the IAACC Pablo Serrano Museum will be available at a later date).


For additional information and/or images of this monumental collaboration, please contact Jacqueline Platt at Corbin-Hillman Communications at (646) 233-0465 or Jacqueline@corbinpr.com.


Santiago Calatrava’s name has been most closely associated with his celebrated designs of bridges and transportation centers built throughout the world. Highlights of his work include designs for: The Milwaukee Art Museum in Wisconsin (2001), the Athens Olympic Sports Complex (2004), the Light Rail Train Bridge in Jerusalem (2007) the Quarto Ponte sul Canal Grande in Venice (2008) and the Liege-Guillemins TGV Railway Station in Belgium (2009). He is currently working on a variety of design and construction projects throughout the world including: The World Trade Center Transportation Hub in New York; the Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge in Dallas; the expansion of the Denver International Airport; The Peace Bridge in Calgary; Citta dello Sport, Rectorate and Campus Master Plan for Roma II University in Tor Vergata, Italy and Yuan Zen University in Taiwan.

SOURCE Santiago Calatrava

Source: newswire

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