Olafur Eliasson, The Weather Project

It was Eliasson who taught me what art meant. That art is an experience, and that my individual experience along with many other individual experiences contribute to the ongoing evolution of meaning. It also taught me that "meaning" is not necessarily defined in a single experience. Progress and process, although look like twins, are in no way identical. But the key lies in the experience of progressing, and then, the experience of processing. 


Before Eliasson, before the Tate Modern, and before The Weather Project, I've tried to understand art. I pretended to enjoy old historic paintings shown while on class field trips. I was probably too young to understand, or I wasn't ready, or I haven't stumbled into art yet (or willed it to stumble my mind). Then I visited the Tate Modern and saw an orange sun. Almost as if entranced, I walked around and around the room, at first to explore the sun and see how it was rigged up, then after a while I forgot the mechanics of the sun and started to explore the whole colors it gave off. After a while I actually forgot the colors when I started to explore the mirrors on the ceiling (mind you I was looking, craning my neck up), then I got tired, and like everyone else I somehow found myself on the floor. I felt comfortable, and I didn't want to move. Not after a long time, and for the longest time, I watched shapes move into new shapes. All of us, people, the "audience" became art, and art became us. I was part of Eliasson's canvas, but it wasn't a fixed canvas, but it was the experience of his masterpiece that defined art or what his work tried to define. Simply put, I forgot everything, and laid on the bare floor for the longest time, looking, watching, and seeing. It was much later, much much later, when I realized I understood art for the first time. 

installation view olafur eliasson the weather project.jpg
What the artist began, the audience completes.
— Richard Dorment, UK Telegraph, 2003

For the full article on this Weather Project, check out here