by Georgia Gardner
A visit to the new Lighthouse Immersive Exhibit
“As a viewer,
the art watches you back.”
Immersive Klimt Revolution
“The images in the exhibition move from rapid dramatic progressions to calm, slower serenity.”
Immersive Klimt Revolution (IKR) is the latest production from Lighthouse Immersive, the producers that brought audiences Immersive Van Gogh, the 600,000 cubic feet projection that sold over 2.5 million tickets in North America. The exhibit promises a vibrant, electrifying celebration of the life and legacy of Gustav Klimt.
Klimt, the Austrian Symbolist painter, has been most connected to the artistic movement Art Nouveau—a gothic style, moving the European art world towards unconventional, organic linear shapes, and psychedelic
experimental effects. As black curtains opened and I entered the exhibition, I realized that IKR does now what Art Nouveau did in the 1900s: changing, transcending and transforming traditional ideas of what art should be, by using this new technology–focused art medium that IKR is, and the public display of eroticism. IKR is anything but predictable, it’s full of contradictions, both whimsical and challenging.
The artworks of Egon Schiele are celebrated alongside Klimt in this production. In 1907, the pair worked closely, as Klimt was Schiele’s mentor. They have been referred to in history as “the masters of sex and death,” a profound and controversial reputation I found was accurately exuberated in this collaboration. IKR sees Klimt and Schiele’s work re-imagined, floating through an immersive experience filled with desperation, sensuality, and vibrant, jewel-coloured tones. In this exhibit, I found Schiele and Klimt a chilling and mesmerizing pair, taking after each other stylistically to depict their fascination with female bodies. These women are portrayed as the subject of lust, but also lonely, placid, and dreamlike in a sequence of expressionless faces—as mermaids, as children, and as lovers. As the show opens with an animated inferno blazing into dark wax, a female nude amongst nature is revealed in a serene ambiance, furnished with lions and other creatures amongst the foliage. The rest of the show evolves in an unpredictable manner, emotive and transgressive.
Read the full article in the print edition of Issue No.7!
Issue No.7 features in-depth interview with artists and arts organizations across 10 cities.