Cordes-sur-Ciel in France has an art space that is a courtyard in a four- story, twelfth-century manor house. The courtyard was covered by a large glass skylight, sixty feet in the air. This natural light cast a warm glow against the gold-colored rock walls below.
I noticed that everyone entering the courtyard immediately looked upward, searching for the source of the light. Somehow, I had to use that space, below the glass, without blocking that warm glow. So once again, I turned to translucent kozo paper. I took the dimensions of that huge skylight, cut it into pie-shaped pieces, and hand-cast the paper panes, averaging thirteen feet long. Then, using kite-building technology, I stretched and hung the paper panes on a grid of cables between the upper floors. A series of vents under the skylight was enough to make the kites rock gently in the slightest breeze.
At the opening, the curator remarked that everyone who enters the space intuitively lifts their head to the sky, and that Madame O’Shea had sculpted that gesture. I liked that.
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