Overview

Informed by the worlds of art, architecture, natural sciences and engineering, Tomas Saraceno’s floating sculptures, community projects and interactive installations propose new, sustainable ways of inhabiting and sensing the environment. For more than two decades he has explored the possibility of a future airborne existence as part of his ongoing Air-Port-City / Cloud City project – a utopia of flying metropolises made up of habitable, cell-like platforms that migrate and recombine as freely as clouds themselves. Building on the progressive proposals and theories put forth by R. Buckminster Fuller, Gyula Kosice, Yona Friedman and other visionary architects before him, Saraceno develops engaging proposals and models that invite viewers to conceptualize innovative ways of living and interacting with one another, and with their surroundings at large.

 

These projects grew into the international, interdisciplinary artistic community Aerocene, which seeks to create an environment free from borders, free from fossil fuels. As part of this community in 2015, Saraceno achieved the world record for the first and longest certified fully-solar manned flight. His profound interest in spiders and their webs led to the formation of the Arachnophilia team at Studio Tomás Saraceno, engendering the creation of Arachnophilia.net and the Arachnomancy App. Through these platforms Saraceno invites people from around the globe to weave the web of interspecies understanding and take part in the challenge of Mapping Against Extinction. In the past decade he has collaborated with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Max Planck Institute, the Nanyang Technological University, the Imperial College London and the Natural History Museum London. With an emphasis on collaborative interaction he also became the first person to scan, reconstruct and reimagine spiders’ weaved spatial habitats, and possesses the only three-dimensional spider web collection in existence.

Works
Installation view, Kemper Art Museum, 2019
Biography

Born in 1973 in Tucuman, Argentina, Saraceno currently lives and works in Berlin. He studied architecture at Universidad Nacional de Buenos Aires in Argentina from 1992 to 1999 and received postgraduate degrees from Escuela Superior de bellas Ares de la Nación Ernesto de la Carcova, Buenos Aires (2000) and Staatliche Hochschule für Bildende Künste - Städelschule-Frankfurt am Main (2003). In 2009, he attended the International Space Studies Program at NASA Center Ames in Silicon Valley, CA, and was awarded the presitgious Calder Prize later that year.
 

Among his many exhibitions since the late 1990s, Saraceno’s important solo presentations include ARIA, Palazzo Strozzi, Florence, Italy (2020), ON AIR, Palais de Tokyo, Paris, France (2019), Tomás Saraceno: Aerographies The Utopian Practitioner and Visionary, Fosun Foundation Shanghai, Shanghai, China (2019), Tomás Saraceno: How to Entangle the Universe in a Spider Web, Museo de Arte Moderno Buenos Aires, Argentina (2017), Wilhelm-Hack Museum, Ludwigshafen, Germany (2017) Stillness in Motion — Cloud Cities, curated by Joseph Becker, Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco, CA (2016), Cosmic Jive, Tomas Saraceno: The Spider Sessions, curated by Luca Cerizza at the Villa Croce in Genoa, Italy (2014), Tomás Saraceno, HfG Karlsruhe in Karlsruhe, Germany (2014), In orbit, Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen K21 in Düsseldorf (2013), On Space time foam, Hangar Bicocca in Milan (2012-13), Tomas Saraceno on the Roof: Cloud City, a site-specific installation commissioned for The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York (2012), Cloud Specific, Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art, St. Louis (2011-12), Cloud Cities, Hamburger Bahnhof, Berlin (2011-12), 14 billion, Bonniers Konsthall, Stockholm (2010), traveled to BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art, Gateshead, UK (2011), Lighter than Air, Walker Arts Center, Minneapolis, traveled to Blaffer Art Museum, University of Houston, Texas (2009-10).


Saraceno also presented two major installations at the 58th Venice Biennale in 2019 as part of the group exhibition, May You Live In Interesting Times, curated by Ralph Rugoff. In 2009, he was included in the 53rd Venice Biennale as part of the group exhibition, Fari Mondi//Making Worlds, curated by Daniel Birnbaum.

His work is presently represented in the collections of the Museum of Modern Art in New York, Miami Art Museum, Dallas Museum of Art, Musée d’Art Moderne Grand-Duc Jean in Luxembourg, Museum für Moderne Kunst in Frankfurt, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, Musée d'art contemporain de Montréal, Canada, among others.

Exhibitions
Publications
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