Well, no, not larger than life, but life itself:
And special, so special.
Jason Hackenwerth is a Florida-based artist, *1970 in St. Louis / MO, renowned for his balloon sculptures, and also his paintings. He was recently showcased at kcontemporary in Denver, Colorado, where I had the opportunity to witness his artwork for the first time, and he was currently creating a piece of art – an own little world – for a private party in sunshine-LA.
It’s all about joy. Everything! The process of creating these sculptures and the final result, because if there is any form of art that delights and inspires both children and adults alike, it is his art.
These balloons! These Leichtigkeit des Seins!
Color, crafted creatures, mythical beings, tactile sensations, the playfulness, your sparkling eyes, forgotten world troubles, moments of pure happiness, or rather,
hours of happiness for private occasions,
from galleries to museums ..
Jason’s artwork has been exhibited at the Guggenheim New York.
„It’s all about the process,“ he says when asked what it means for him to hand these sculptures to private owners, a party, knowing they might even be dismantled the next day.
For him, the process is what really fascinates, touches, amazes, him. To design, the sketches, the selection of colors. Balloons are inflated after buying around 10,000 or even 20,000 of them for an event like today’s.
And the music blares, while there’s dancing and laughter, and hundreds of balloons are loaded and linked to each other during a week of intense work.
When displayed in public buildings, these sculptures may last for three to five months, Jason says. Every day, they slowly lose a bid of air, and everyone has their own idea about when a sculpture looks the most appealing, at what level of inflation.
If a sculpture is robust and full of air at the start, its forms and colors gradually merge with time, just like in life: To be in awe, getting closer, more relaxed, and form deep connections.
And sometimes it is broken before that.
And this art brings joy to the table!
At a party venue, it will hang above you as you sit there,
an adult, well-behaved at the lavishly set table, already secretly tapping your foot to the music’s rhythm, and it will catch your attention, whispering in your ear:
‘Play with me! Now! Tomorrow I might be gone!‘
Thank you, Jason. It was both a pleasure and a lot of fun to meet you in LA and work with you! Grateful for you and your team. May your sculptures bring moments of greatest joy to life, everywhere to everybody, and they undoubtedly will.