Olafur Eliasson

Marcella Beccaria
Tate Publishing

Olafur Eliasson has always had a very set approach to his production of art. Referring to his role as an artist as one that is “to create a situation in which the viewer is at the centre”, his main preoccupation is the audience. Using nearly every medium available to him, including photography, installation, architecture, films, video and design collaborations, his varied practice is built in relation to the viewer. For example, his piece Mental  forces audiences to observe themselves in a mirror.

The artist’s use of unconventional tools, such as mirrors, lights and water, is a means by which he can challenge the boundaries of space. Interested in architectural and environmental landscapes, his concluding art is some of the most impressively ambitious contemporary work in the world.

Eliasson has never been interested in manipulating the reactions of his audiences and as such develops work that is transparent at all levels. Beccaria fittingly does the same in this book, laying out the artist’s biographical and academic journey side by side, exploring both the man and the practice to be perceived and understood.

Hannah Clugston