Artist Joana Vasconcelos, whose fabulous crochet-covered ceramic sculptures we introduced you to a ways back, has made a splash with her latest project: Gateway.
We love swimming pools and we love art, so it goes without saying that when artists design a swimming pool as an art installation, we get very excited about it. We’ve already shown you the incredible Fake Swimming Pool by Leandro Erlich, The Swimming Pool by artist Richard Woods and the controversial Pink Corian Pool by Roger Ferris + Partners. This one may just be our favorite so far.
Gateway Pool by Joana Vasconcelos
Gateway, a colorful tiled swimming pool, is made of 11,366 hand-painted and glazed tiles crafted using 100 year old traditional Portuguese methods. The recent permanent addition commissioned for Edinburgh sculpture garden Jupiter Artland was created by artist Joana Vasconcelos.
The inviting and fully functioning pool is deliberately aligned with an Earth’s energy meridian, depicting the artist’s drawing of her own astrological chart – as shown below:
The giant sculpture garden, Jupiter Artland, was founded in 2009 by philanthropist art collectors Robert and Nicky Wilson and sits on over 100 acres of meadow, woodland, includes five indoor gallery spaces and is home to 35 permanent site-specific sculptures from globally recognized artists. Each year they host as a seasonal programme of exhibitions and events. Jupiter’s 2019 programme included the opening of the swimming pool by Vasconcelos.
Gateway is an artwork integrated in a whimsical pool garden and is the result of a three-year collaboration between Jupiter Artland and the artist. The nine-meter, fully functioning swimming pool is surrounded by a yew hedge that frames the whole composition and is a natural limit to the artist´s intervention which draws inspiration from the leylines that are said to intersect at the 100 acres sculpture park. These leylines are believed by some to channel earthly energy, connecting sacred and spiritual sites across the world.
Vasconcelos has incorporated patterns from her own astrological chart into the design of the artwork, which is made of 11,366 hand-painted and glazed tiles crafted using traditional Portugese methods at a 100-year-old factory in Vasconcelos’ native Portugal.
Each tile is one of a kind and was developed by Viúva Lamego and Atelier Joana Vasconcelos and has no duplicates throughout the entire artwork.
Like so much of Vasconcelos’ work, Gateway is collectively formed, and the final result is a vast communal labor and celebration of the intricacies and social-political associations of the act of craftsmanship.
“Gateway is a big splash that invites the public to immerse in a joyful and spirited dimension, leading to a connection with the energy of the Earth. It’s like a threshold to another universe that we’re not conscious of but through which we can flow.” – Artist Joana Vasconcelos
From beach balls to bathers, take a look through Jupiter Artland’s range of products created in celebration of the permanent commission Gateway by Joana Vasconcelos. The beautiful and functional pool inspired a collection, utilizing the pattern by Vasconcelos, of products available through the sculpture garden which include apparel, inflatables and more.
View the other permanent artworks at Jupiter Artland here