A Temporary Shelter

Posted by on March 13, 2012

Umbrellas are used over and over again in art installations. They offer a unique mix of properties: relatively cheap, available in large quantities, lovely to look at, and they have the implication of protecting a person from the elements – a temporary shelter. They can be really cute (my first umbrella was bright yellow with a duck shaped handle), or they can be serious, black and businesslike.

This is Abri N°177 by the French group Oz Collective.

Using an underpinning armature of wooden dowels and wires, the umbrellas are inserted handle side in to form a sphere.

Much of what I like about it is the spikey nature of the closed umbrellas – they could all be open or all be closed. The sculpture changes shape quite a bit with the opening or closing of each one. Only when open does an umbrella create a shelter.

The work also makes some great shadows when lit from within.

All images from the Oz Collective website

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