This summer, many of you will head to London to take in its rich art and culture. Head about 200 miles to the north, however, and experience a strange and otherworldly exhibition that will surely knock your socks off! Now and until September 25, Spanish artist Jaume Plensa is showing an extraordinary body of new and recent works at the Yorkshire Sculpture Park (YSP). It is his first major exhibition of sculpture and drawing in the UK.
Some of Plensa's works are meant to encourage tactile and sensory exploration. They include a beautiful 50-meter curtain of poetry made of suspended steel letters, large illuminated sculptures in the landscape, and engraved gongs that visitors can strike to fill the gallery with sound. Mostly, his work involves the body. In fact, he used casts of his own body and the faces of people he met while exhibiting his work around the world.
“From when I was born, my everyday life has involved literature and poetry and words,” he tells Yorkshire Post. “My first visual information was letters, my father was a very big reader and so it is natural for that to be a part of my work.”
What does it all mean? The sculptures are meant to give physical form to the intangible as a way of exploring emotions and what it means to be human. They represent human bodies through text, light and sound, exploring universal themes like love, memory, language and despair.
If you're in New York, you can check out Jaume Plensa's work at Madison Square Garden from now till August 14. Echo is a massive, 44-foot tall sculpture of a nine-year-old girl from Plensa's Barcelona neighborhood who is lost in a state of thoughts and dreams. How serene.
Yorkshire Sculpture Park website
Photos via YSP