Friday, March 27, 2015

Fujiko Nakaya Fog Bridge



Last month I went to see Fujiko Nakaya's Fog Bridge installation, which was taking place at Pero's Bridge in Bristol. I am always excited by installations like these, especially if there's an interactive element, and as it was billed as "A chance to literally walk in the clouds" [New York Times] I had to see it!



Pero's Bridge is already a very interesting and sculptural piece of architecture, so it was a beautiful backdrop for the swirling fog, and I felt it really added to the effect. Having this installation in a harbour, with lapping waves, seagulls flying overhead and boats gliding through the fog also made it seem very natural and almost as if the fog was just part of the elements. It reminded me not only of fog but of sea foam.


The installation was presented by the In Between Time fesival in partnership with the Arnolfini, which also had an exhibition of photographs and video of Fujiko Nakaya's previous work. It was part of the celebrations of Bristol being the European Green Capital for 2015, and was meant to inspire thoughts and conversations on climate change and how this will affect us. It was certainly an interesting concept, especially as the fog bridge seemed so natural and at home in its setting, but was actually created and set up by humans.


Seeing people's reaction to the fog bridge was fascinating, from children and some adults who got very excited and spent a long time standing on the bridge to experience the fog, to people who had obviously walked across many times on their daily business and paid it no attention whatsoever. There were also those who weren't expecting it (despite the signs!) and got caught out in the sudden blast of spray. 


I really enjoyed visiting he Fog Bridge. It was visually stunning, I felt it increased the sensory experience of the harbour, and walking through the cloud of fog was a magical experience which I won't be forgetting in a hurry.



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