Brazilian fibre artist Ernesto Neto has spun a magical spell inside the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, suspending a 79-ft-long, hand-crotched maze inside its gallery.
The walkable sculpture, dubbed SunForceOceanLife, spirals 12-ft in the air and is made with yellow, orange and green polymer thread. Plastic balls are stuffed inside the ‘path’ base of the piece, shifting underfoot as people tread across it, forcing them to shift their balance and grip its fibre strands.
Says Neto: ‘It directly engages the body as does a joyful dance or meditation, inviting us to relax, breathe, and uncouple our body from our conscious mind. The sensation of floating, the body cradled by the crocheted fruits of our labour, brings to mind a hammock: the quintessential indigenous invention that uplifts us and connects us to the wisdom and traditions of our ancestors.’
Wafting smells of turmeric and cumin accompany the site-specific sensory installation. Neto has also burnt the ends of the fibres as a homage to the spiritual rituals of Brazil’s indigenous people.