Olafur Eliasson: Spectacular contemporary art at the Versailles Palace

Anyone following cityartnow must have noticed by now that our team has a special affection for the work of Olafur Eliasson; ranging from artistic admiration (Helena) to almost religious reverence (George). We have experienced exciting artistic adventures following his exhibitions and installations from Copenhagen (Louisiana Museum) to Vienna (Belvedere) to Paris (Louis Vuitton Foundation) to Rotterdam (Boijmans Van Beuningen) and still this restless artist won’t stop amazing us.
Imagine our joy when it was announced that Eliasson would be the next artist to exhibit at the Versailles Palace, an annual celebration of contemporary art that gave us amazing shows in the recent years (Jeff Koons, 2008, Takashi Murakami, 2010, Lee Ufan, 2014, Anish Kapoor, 2015).
 
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Waterfall, 2016. Palace of Versailles, 2016. Photo: Anders Sune Berg
 
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Waterfall, 2016. Palace of Versailles, 2016. Photo: Anders Sune Berg
 
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Waterfall, 2016. Palace of Versailles, 2016. Photo: Anders Sune Berg
 
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Deep mirror (yellow) and Deep mirror (black), 2016. Palace of Versailles, 2016. Photo: Anders Sune Berg
 
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Solar compression, 2016. Palace of Versailles, 2016. Photo: Anders Sune Berg
 
Catherine Pégard, the President of the Public Establishment of the palace, talks about the process that the artist followed while preparing the exhibition: “Olafur Eliasson’s mind is in perpetual motion, but he is sparing with his words and gestures. His ideas are abundant and ever-changing, his actions precise, measured. He strode around the grounds of Versailles, finding inspiration here, only to abandon the idea, imagining a work there, later deciding the spot was not entirely suitable. He returned several times before deciding on the places that would hold his attention in the long term, stopping to examine a detail on a sculpture in a forgotten corner of a drawing room. He even wanted to wander alone at night through the château, experiencing emotions and impressions which in themselves form a unique relationship with the inexhaustible mysteries of the Versailles estate.”
 
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Glacial rock flour garden, 2016. Palace of Versailles, 2016. Photo: Anders Sune Berg
 
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Fog assembly, 2016. Palace of Versailles, 2016. Photo: Anders Sune Berg
 
As expected, the result is nothing less than amazing. “Metaphors of water, diffraction of light, confusion of mirrors, intensified emotions, moving shadows: Olafur Eliasson wants the visitor to take possession of Versailles alongside him. And it is an augmented reality that imposes itself, an engine room of the imagination, and one not so fundamentally far away from that which captured the hearts of the 18th century.” So if you have chosen Paris for your summer vacations, be sure to add this spectacular event to your list! Spare some time, grab the train to Versailles and witness the magic of this exhibition!
 
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The gaze of Versailles, 2016. Palace of Versailles, 2016. Photo: Anders Sune Berg
 
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The gaze of Versailles, 2016. Palace of Versailles, 2016. Photo: Anders Sune Berg

 
INFO: The exhibition will be on view until October 30, 2016.
In the Château: Everyday except Monday, 9am to 6.30pm. Normal visiting conditions, no additional charge to the château ticket (€15) for the exhibition.
In the Gardens: Everyday from 8am to 8.30pm. Free entry
 
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Your sense of unity, 2016. Palace of Versailles, 2016. Photo: Anders Sune Berg
 
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The curious museum, 2010. Palace of Versailles, 2016. Photo: Anders Sune Berg
 
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Waterfall, 2016. Palace of Versailles, 2016. Photo: Anders Sune Berg

 
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