Earlier this year a man wrapped his rented home and a palm tree in aluminum foil in the interest of art. His neighbors weren’t amused. But Piotr Janowski’s shiny project did catch someone’s eye.
Janowski’s aluminum foil art will be featured at the St. Petersburg Museum of Fine Arts beginning December 3. Janowski will apply foil to eight palm trees surrounding the museum and attach what he describes as abstract forms, “suggestive of the human ear.”
“The meticulously applied and highly reflective medium invites the viewer to explore every groove and hair of the bark. It does this mainly by exceptionally strong reflectance at sharp angles, and an unpredictable, scrambled appearance of colors and light coming in from the surrounding environment,” Janowski said in a statement. “In the uncovered palm tree, expected colors and shadows conceal the natural complexity and beauty to the viewer. Paradoxically, the installation is revealing through concealing.”
While the MFA has shown outdoor exhibits before, this is the first time they’ve featured a large-scale contemporary display.
The display, called “Curiosity,” will remain open for all to see through Valentine’s Day. Interestingly enough, the exhibit is sponsored by Reynolds Wrap.
Janowski has even bigger plans for his aluminum foil art. What began as a project aimed at exploring the mix of land and light in Florida has now become a quest for sustainable energy. Janowski hopes to one day create a sculpture that generates electricity.
A reception including a meet and greet with the artist is Thursday at 5:30 on the front steps of the museum.
Janowski was born in Poland in 1962. He studied art at the Academy of Fine Arts in Lodz and the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. He has exhibitions in both Poland and Chicago.