Matt McConnell and Pia Jensen met in the United Arab Emirates in 2017, where they were both selected as featured artists in the 20th edition Sharjah Islamic Arts Festival, along with 42 artists from 31 countries, all of whom had created large site-specific works.
The center of their collaboration is an infinite pattern of circles often described as sacred geometry, which both artists have used as a base for their respective works in the festival in the UAE, and which naturally blend to create new levels of three-dimensional form. Where Matt uses helix forms often in his work, Pia has chosen straight lines in the pattern to generate hexagonal forms in here work. Both of these approaches see the work as part of a much larger, infinite system that we only see a small piece of.
The question is: “Can we create a module, that can be combined infinitely, and can this be applied in countless contexts? Can we design it in long-lasting and sustainable materials? Can we develop it in a way, that appeals to the viewer’s own participation, so that the final expression becomes the users’?”
The first sketches were made in October 2019, working from Matt’s workshop in Raleigh NC, USA. Since then a regular exchange of sketches, thoughts, and models has kept the project alive through Covid-19.
In May of 2021 we have been working at the Danish Art Workshops with the goal of getting deeper into design and further development, focused on form and material solutions for durability, sustainability, and usability.
The goal is to create environments that are flexible and to engage, educate and inspire through the following approaches:
– An urban space module that is either a single room, or an open space created with several modules that grow into a communal space.
– A system that invites play and learning through form and material expression, including optional information panels or interactive elements.
– An option for both interior and exterior spaces, using materials appropriate to each in durability and texture.
The project continues despite delays by Corona restrictions, with much progress being made recently due to less restrictions.
Supported by The Danish Arts Foundation, Danmarks Nationalbank’s Jubilæumsfond af 1968, and the Beckett Foundation.