As humans we are fairly habitual beings, so it is exciting when we find that someone has put some thought
into encouraging new interactions with an existing space. The indianapolis museum of art (IMA) has commissioned Los Angeles-based Ball-Nogues Studio to create a site-specific, architectural installation
for the IMA’s Efroymson Family Entrance Pavilion. Entitled ‘Gravity’s Loom’, the immersive project
explores the space and structure of the pavilion’s entrance. The space will be filled with multicolored
strings configured in arcs naturally assumed by the strings as they respond to the force of gravity.
The surface will twist, contort, and spiral downward through the atrium, transforming the architectural
space and re-choreographing the flow of visitors to encourage new interactions with the museum.
Ball-Nogues is a collaborative design and fabrication studio led by Benjamin Ball and Gaston Nogues that fuses
the disciplines of art, architecture and design to create technologically innovative and visually spectacular built environments. The studio has exhibited at major institutions throughout the world, including the Museum
of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles; the Museum of Modern Art; the Guggenheim Museum; arc en rêve centre
d’architecture + Musée d’Art Contemporain de Bordeaux; the Venice Biennale, the Hong Kong | Shenzhen Biennale;
and the Beijing Biennale.
Ball-Nogues worked with the pavilion’s architecture to develop an installation related to the function of the space as a thoroughfare and meeting point for visitors. They liken their method of fabrication to a 21st century application of Ikat, an indonesian term for the ancient textile process of resist dye. A labor intensive method, Ikat involves the application of vibrant colors to precise locations on individual yarns that, when woven, form a three dimensional volume that blurs into sections of color and then snap into a focused geometry, depending on the viewer’s vantage point.. They color the strings individually in precise locations by using four computer-controlled airbrushes that are part of a programmable machine of their own design.
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