Shoplifter recently brought her hair-based art to Venice Biennale, creating an immersive cave installation out of the cascading layers of hues and unsettling textures. The Icelandic artist, whose real name is Hrafnhildur Arnardottir, has long used both real and fake hair to create her massive works.
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I am honored and proud to present my installation CHROMO SAPIENS for the Icelandic Pavilion at La Biennale di Venezia 2019. Curated by Birta Gudjonsdottir. Entering Chromo Sapiens, you find yourself in Primal Opus, a dark passage of emanating volcanic earthy hues, activated by the sub terra sound of the Icelandic cult metal band HAM. The second chamber erupts into a shockingly bright undulation of colored neon hair tufts. Aptly named Astral Gloria, her soaring cathedral ceiling and sheer emersion of chromatic opulence generates a kind of euphoric kinetic synesthesia. Opium Natura, the final cave flutters effortlessly into a soft landing of shimmering whites and pale soothing pastels, a fluffy heavenly nest that cradles you into a sense of serenity and sublime gentle bliss. The Icelandic band HAM play an essential role, with a commissioned opus heard and felt throughout the installation. Their dissonant compositions of murmurs and pulsating pithy frequencies signal a nebulous final surrender of senses into the very walls of the caves embrace. Images by Elisabet Davidsdottir. @IcelandicPavilion @LaBiennale @ShoplifterArt #Shoplifter #ChromoSapiens #IcelandicPavilion #installation #installationart
“Working with both synthetic and natural hair, her sculptures, wall murals and site-specific installations explore themes of vanity, self-image, fashion, beauty and popular myth,” her site says. “For Shoplifter hair is the ultimate thread that grows from our body. Hair is an original, creative fiber, a way for people to distinguish themselves as individuals, and often an art form. Humor plays a large role in her life and work, sometimes subtly, but at other times taking over.” See more of her work from past projects below.