Artist and architect Sophia Chang recently reinvented a gallery storefront with a stretchy cocoon-like installation that blurred the boundary between inner and outer environments. Entitled 'Suspense,' the interactive exhibit was comprised of long curving tunnels created from huge sheets of Lycra stretched across rectangular frames. The softened geometries and removal of typical spatial cues compelled visitors to develop a greater awareness of themselves their surroundings.
Constructed at the entrance of the INVIVIA Gallery in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Suspense traded in preconceived notions of architectural space for a playful, interactive experience. Upon entering, visitors were immediately enveloped in a white curving cocoon suspended up off of the ground. The site-specific installation was divided into two asymmetrical halves by a curved fabric wall. Each half of the cocoon branched out in multiple tunnels to connect with various openings and exits.
Chang also carefully created breaks between the fabric of the Lycra cocoon to offer visitors glimpses of the existing environment, such as a brick wall or a spiral staircase. Visitors were also made aware of the presence of others through silhouettes in the thin, stretchy fabric. Considered an ‘open work,’ the Suspense’s visitor experience constantly changed depending on different factors such as lighting and the number of visitors, the presence of whom can distort the shape of the tensile walls.
Images via Anita Kan