No, your eyes are not deceiving you—this one-tonne car and its parking space really are hanging upside down in the air. This amazing gravity-defying work of art is the latest optical illusion completed by Alex Chinneck, the British artist with a history of mind-bending installations including a melting wax house and sliding building front. Titled ‘Pick yourself up and pull yourself together,’ the temporary art installation was created in collaboration with Vauxhall Motors and was installed at London’s Southbank Center.
Alex Chinneck dramatically upended the tomato-red Vauxhall Corsa car fifteen feet in the air by attaching it to a 50-foot-long strip of tarmac that peels off the ground into a wave-like asphalt arch. The gravity-defying car appears to hang on to the curved road without any visible physical support. Chinneck collaborated with a team of structural engineers, steel benders, scenic artists, metal workers, carpenters, tarmac-layers, and road-painters to make the sculpture possible; the theatrical artwork was installed overnight.
“I see sculpture as the physical reinterpretation of the material world around us and so by introducing fictional narratives into familiar scenarios, I try to make everyday situations as extraordinary as they can be,” says Chinneck about the artwork. “I choose to do this through illusions because I think there is something both optimistic and captivating about defying the realms of possibility. With an effortlessly curling road, I hoped to transcend the material nature of tarmac and stone, giving these typically inflexible materials an apparent fluidity.”
The ‘Pick yourself up and pull yourself together’ installation can be found in South Bank Center’s car park, next to the London Eye, where it will stay until next Thursday, February 26, 2015.
Images via Vauxhall Corsa