Spiraling down through a hole in the floor, 68,000 red, orange, and yellow clothespins hang from the ceiling of the MAR Museum in Buenos Aires for Martin Huberman and Normal Studio's installation, Tender Vortex Sunrise. "Inspired by the pictorial-scientific imaginary that underlies the study of tornados, hurricanes, and storms, and by the sheer pull of their simple and powerful forms, we attempted to test the tender as material language, using it to construct a full-scale wooden tornado," Normal describes on their website.
The installation is meant to evoke, "human fascination with natural phenomena," and the wonder of making invisible forces like gravity visible. The concept draws on Huberman's and Normal designer Nina Carrara's formal and historiographic-conceptual research, which has resulted in what they call "material language."
Huberman and Normal have a history of making hanging sculptures with clothespins, starting with 2008's Tender Prototipo, but Tender Vortex Sunrise—a full-scale replica of a natural disaster—is their most ambitious project yet. Their description summarizes the installation in its final sentence, stating, "At stake is the possibility of rediscovering beauty in the existent by means of a sensorial yet informed re-reading."
Check out Tender Vortex Sunrise in images, and a behind-the-scenes installation video, below: