Installation artist Christina Watka takes us behind the scenes of her latest installation, Dichotomous Air, at Etsy’s Brooklyn headquarters. Created with hundreds of hand-cut pieces of mica, a pearly, naturally-sourced material, the installation acts as a reflective canopy in the building’s central hallway. Read on for more on Christina’s process behind the site-specific installation.
Photos courtesy of Christina Watka & Paula Abrieu Pita
“The mica is paper thin but sturdy and sculptural. Woven together in a collective form, but noticeable in individual rounded, stone-like shapes. Transparent and colorful, it is often mirror-like in its ability to reflect light.”
“By densely enveloping the room with a lightweight, ephemeral material, one feels both cozy and uplifted, weightless and heavy. The work is kinetic, but stagnant; the light flutters around the room, but the material stays steady.”
“The location functions as a hallway, and it was always my intention to imbue this once straightforward space with the same sense of wonder and dimension that the Etsy brand thrives on; the energy in the building is youthful, optimistic, and creative. I knew that I wanted to work from the ceiling, and to use a material that would utilize the natural light that moves around the building throughout the day.”
“The title, 'Dichotomous Air', revealed itself to me after the installation was complete. Standing in the room, under a mineral canopy that both refracted and reflected the light, I noticed dualities and opposing ideas flowing through the space in perfect harmony. There is something undeniably scientific about the work, perhaps the basic materials - copper and mica. ”
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