photo: KIOKU Keizo

Invisible Garden

ArtistLeandro ERLICH
Material/ Techniquemixed media
Size/ DurationH346×φ510cm
Copyright Notice© Leandro ERLICH
Year of acquisition/ donation2014
DescriptionBorn in Buenos Aires, Argentina in 1973. Lives and works in Montevideo, Uruguay.

Erlich employs artworks that explore such philosophical questions as how we understand phenomena, enter into relationships with spaces, and grasp reality. He often creates large-scale installations, transforming the entire space into a world filled with humor and wit that stimulates the thoughts and perceptions of the viewer in unusual ways. He investigates issues of perception and cognition with a lighthearted approach, creating visual illusions that suspend ordinary reality and arouse wonder and delight rather than conducting rigorous scientific experiments. His art makes us reexamine the way we look at the world and the nature of the space and time in which we position ourselves.

"The Swimming Pool" is an artwork that takes the form of a swimming pool set in the courtyard of the museum and is accessible from underneath. To visitors looking down on it from the ground level it appears to be an ordinary swimming pool, but it is equipped with a transparent reinforced glass bottom that is only ten centimeters below the water surface when filled. At the same time, it is possible to enter the empty bottom area of the pool under the glass via an underground passage, so visitors above and below can look at each other through the water. A sense of intimacy is created between people who do not know each other in a moment that subverts people’s common-sense perception of ordinary places and spaces. "Invisible Garden" is a bower with the form of a regular twelve-sided polyhedron. The interior is divided into four equal parts with eight large mirrors. People tend to think that what they see actually exists, but in this work the effect of the mirrors causes us to doubt the spatial relationship between our own reflections, conditions inside the structure, and the mixture of real and virtual images created by the movement of other people through the same space. This work presents an experience of thinking with the body and raises questions about our ordinary awareness of space depending on vision.