There are only three days left until the biggest event of the year, The Olympic Games! Are you excited for it? What sport do you enjoy the most? Unfortunately art is not in the Olympics anymore, but that is no reason for Angel Orensanz not to participate in London 2012, of course in his own unique way.
His ritualistic sphere that has traveled all over the world with him now stops in London, more specifically at The Hundred Years Gallery for his take on this year’s games. The renowned Spanish artist cares about issues like cultural difference and identity and works with that in his art.
His first exhibition with the sphere was in Venice, where he did “Burning Universe”, in which he walked the 8.5-feet in diameter transparent plastic sphere thought streets, as well as in a Gondola. In the same year, Angel Orensanz was invited to expose in Tokyo, where he installed his ball and performed in front of the Senso-ji temple, which was destroyed by American bombs on the World War 2 and reconstructed by the Japanese after the war. Florence was the next destination of the sphere, this time by invitation from the Biennale. The sphere has rolled the world, Berlin, New York, Madrid, Barcelona, and now London.
Aristotle once said “perfect things move in circles” and Angel has truly taken that to heart, using his sphere in different ways for his art. He sees it as a symbol of perfection, of the fullness of being, and of totality, and he plays with the various interpretations of its meanings by making it represent many things in his performances: sometimes throwing it playfully into the sky, sometimes leaving it on the floor, sometimes painting it sometimes leaving it transparent, sometimes, even sealing himself inside it and transporting himself into the art.
The opening of his exhibition in the London gallery will happen the same day as the opening ceremony of the Olympic Games, and such as the sphere the Olympics have traveled the world. Also, if you see a sphere from the front, it looks like a circle, or better, a ring, which reminds us of the Olympic symbol, the interlocking rings, that “represent the five parts of the world which now are won over to Olympism and willing to accept healthy competition”, the creator of the symbol Baron Pierre de Coubertin affirms.
Healthy competition, cultural difference, cultural identity, it can all be tied to Angel, so it is no wonder he is there with a site-specific exhibition celebrating the Olympics.