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“Floating World” Installation by Billy Friebele ’08 (MFAST) On View at Artisphere

An instillation created by MFAST Alumnus and Faculty Member Billy Friebele will be On View at Artisphere, an art center in Arlington, Virginia

Posted 03.21.13 by Drew Lundholm

ARLINGTON--"Floating World," an installation by MFA in Studio Art alum and faculty member Billy Friebele '08, recreates the experience of cloud gazing inside of Artisphere's Town Hall atrium,  and explores our relationship with the natural and virtual worlds. Bringing the outdoors inside is akin to the human desire to control nature, a task we have been trying to accomplish for centuries. A large cluster of helium balloons floats in the Town Hall atrium, tethered to a platform on the ground floor below. A drawing implement dangles over the platform connected to the balloons, slowly marking a sheet of paper. The movement of this synthetic cloud is recorded in a drawing that evolves over the course of the exhibition. Visitors are an integral part of the creation process as their presence in the space affects the outcome of the work. By moving throughout the artificial habitat created in Artisphere's Town Hall, viewers are given the power to affect the direction of the wind. Visitor movement triggers motion sensors attached to fans that when activated, push the clouds around the space. The motion of clouds can be directly tracked as drawings on paper.

Although Friebele has staged drawing installations using various instruments in multiple locations, "Floating World" marks his largest drawing installation in an indoor space. On view, in addition to the Floating World installation in the Town Hall, will be documentation of the process by Artisphere's Front Desk. The exhibition will be on display from Wednesday, March 6 through Sunday, March 31 at Artisphere's Town Hall Atrium (1101 Wilson Boulevard, Arlington, VA). A happy hour event will be held on Thursday, March 21 from 7-10 p.m.

Founded in 1826, Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) is the oldest continuously degree-granting college of art and design in the nation. The College enrolls nearly 3,500 undergraduate, graduate and continuing studies students from 49 states and 65 countries in fine arts, design, electronic media, art education, liberal arts, and professional studies degree and non-credit programs. Redefining art and design education, MICA is pioneering interdisciplinary approaches to innovation, research, and community and social engagement. Alumni and programming reach around the globe, even as MICA remains a cultural cornerstone in the Baltimore/Washington region, hosting hundreds of exhibitions and events annually by students, faculty and other established artists.