Florian Dombois: Galleria del Vento

July 8th– August 13th
Florian Dombois: Galleria del Vento

What would Venice be without the wind? Where is the wind when it isn’t blowing? And how might the idea of research be made fruitful for the arts?

For the past five years, artist Florian Dombois has been operating a wind-tunnel lab, which brings together various disciplines, on the roof of Zurich University of the Arts (ZHdK). The tunnel functions as a picture puzzle: For researchers accustomed to starting with a problem, it provides a tangible surface and a stringent experimental arrangement; for those, however, who move outside the logic of a scientific problem, its interior and its walls provide an empty space, an invisible sculpture. To see the wind, one must first visualize it and introduce smoke, feathers, or soap bubbles; to explore the wind, one must propose a model, a shape, or a kite. And thus reveal oneself.

The Venice show has four aspects: (1) The opening will feature the wind motor from the Zurich lab. During the five-week exhibition, Dombois will develop this motor into a wind tunnel, and thus slowly shape the swirling wind generated by the machine. (2) Every morning, he will sail out into the lagoon to collect the material needed for the tunnel from abandoned islands and sites and assemble it into a collage. (3) The exhibition will include a “Palaver,” a space created especially to facilitate debate on art and individual works. Discussions held every Saturday will consider how to develop a kind of research able to serve artists and the arts. (4) The show will also include a section for collecting and displaying articulations from the exhibition that can claim to be more than purely ephemeral.

The artist will be present throughout. 

Florian Dombois

Florian Dombois (*1966, Berlin) is an artist whose work focuses on time, scales, models, landforms, labilities, wind and tectonic activity.

  • 2003-2011, Professor at Bern University of the Arts (Switzerland).
  • Since 2011, Professor at Zurich University of the Arts (Switzerland).
  • Recipient of the 2010 German Sound Art Prize.