Chase Contemporary is proud to present never-before exhibited kinetic works by esteemed artist, inventor, & pioneering engineer Chuck Hoberman. Hoberman’s work is a combination of precise mathematics and an integration of organic movements inspired by nature. We will be unveiling five sculptures at the 2019 New York Art Fair- one in our booth, ANY306, and four in the VIP lounge and adjoining public areas. This is the first time Hoberman’s sculptures will be commercially available in a gallery.
“The underlying theme of my kinetic sculpture is transformation itself. Since everything changes all the time (including ourselves), it’s a topic that seems almost too large to grasp. My primary inspiration comes from nature- watching the endlessly changing shapes of clouds on a clear day, the curling flow of a turbulent fluid, or a time-lapse film of a growing plant. My creative focus is to make our experience of transformation visible and visceral. The viewer sees the artwork fluidly transform as it rearranges all of its parts, similar to how natural organisms grow by rearranging their own cells and molecules.”
— Chuck Hoberman
Included in the Art New York installation is the world famous Iris Dome, which was featured at the Museum of Modern Art, NY (MoMA). Hoberman designed the Iris Dome in 1994 as a new type of retractable roof that opens and closes like the iris of an eye. The dome has rigid covering panels attached to its structure, which glide smoothly over one another to form a continuous skin covering the dome when fully extended. The first outdoor installation of the Iris Dome appeared beside the German Pavilion at Expo 2000, the World’s Fair held in Hanover, Germany. The dome celebrated the reconstruction of Dresden’s legendary Frauenkirche Cathedral, which was destroyed during the WWII.
Hoberman used the dome’s design to create the Arch for the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City. This was his introduction to the world of live entertainment. In 2009, he created the Expanding Video Screen as the centerpiece for the U2 360° tour, a giant shape-shifting screen having a height of seven stories and weighing over thirty tons. As part of the design team for Atlanta’s Mercedes Benz stadium, Hoberman’s Iris Dome was a key inspiration for its unique retractable roof, seen by millions during Super Bowl 2019.
With the sculpture Helicoid, Hoberman explores the helix, a form that has fascinated artists and mathematicians for centuries. The shape is prevalent in nature, occurring in shells and in our DNA. Helicoid expands and contracts using Hoberman’s own unique system of complex scissor-like connections, creating a hypnotic, mesmerizing effect. He refers to these works as shape-invariant expanding structures - objects that expand without changing their shape.
Morphing Sculptures is a new body of work which has never been publicly displayed in which Hoberman investigates what happens when one form transforms into another. Mitosis is inspired by a cell dividing into two. Morphing Sphere portrays a sphere changing into a cylinder, while Spiral consists of a spinning spiral which seemingly continues endlessly in an imaginative vertical space above and below the sculpture. The shifting metal splines of these sculptures trick the eye, seeming to change form in front of us, and creating intricate patterns as they move. All three Morphing Sculptures are available in editions of 6.
Chuck Hoberman (born 1956 in Cambridge, Massachusetts, US) is an artist, engineer and inventor whose creations range from architectural structures, sets for live entertainment, and emergency shelters to best-selling toys and medical research. His most renowned invention, the Hoberman Sphere (1994) was added to the permanent collection of MoMA in 2010. Hoberman won the Chrysler Design Award for Innovation and Design in 1997 and was a finalist for the 2000 Smithsonian National Design Award. Hoberman’s work has been exhibited several times at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, including his commissioned installation, Emergent Surface, that was part of the 2008 exhibit “Design and the Elastic Mind.” Hoberman began his career as a sculptor, working with Hans Haacke and Vito Acconci. He holds over twenty patents for his transformable inventions. He’s been featured in Architectural Digest, The Boston Globe, Wired, The New Yorker, and The New York Times. Hoberman holds a bachelor’s degree in sculpture from Cooper Union and a master’s degree in mechanical engineering from Columbia University. He is a professor of Design Engineering at the Harvard Graduate School of Design.