Tomás Saraceno: how to entangle the universe in a spider web

This exhibition consists of two large installations that combine Tomás Saraceno’s (San Miguel de Tucumán, 1973) interest in arachnology and astro-physics with sound, visual art and a ‘cosmic concert’.

In the installation The Cosmic Dust Spider Web Orchestra, located in the second floor basement, a spider hanging from a thread weaves its web. The vibrations produced by its movements are amplified, generating sound waves that spread across the space while particles of cosmic dust float around it. Tuned in to the cadence of the sound waves produced by the spider, an algorithm translates the movements of the cosmic dust into sounds that are then played from speakers, thus making the dust’s movements audible. The particles are also captured by a video system that projects them onto a big screen, creating the illusion of size for particles that are barely visible to the naked eye.

In the second floor gallery, the Moderno presents the installation Instrumento Musical Cuasi-Social IC 342 construido por 7000 Parawixia bistriata [Quasi-Social Musical Instrument IC 342 built by 7000 Parawixia bistriata]. Between October 2016 and January 2017, eighteen colonies of the spider Parawixia bistriata spent their nights weaving the world’s largest indoor spider web. This community structure, which dates back 140 million years to the first spiders to appear on earth, is a microscopic but faithful reflection of the infinitely complex network of individuals, species and elements that make up the universe.

After graduating as an architect from the UBA, Saraceno took postgraduate degrees in Art and Architecture at the Escuela Superior de Bellas Artes Ernesto de la Cárcova and the Städelschule, Frankfurt am Main, Germany. In 2009 he assisted NASA’s International Space Studies Program. He has held several major solo exhibitions at important institutions, including: Museo d’Arte Contemporanea di Villa Croce, Genoa (2014); K21, Düsseldorf (2013-2015); the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York (2012); Maison Hermès, Tokyo (2012); Hamburger Bahnhof—Museum für Gegenwart, Berlin, the Museo d’Arte Contemporanea, Rome (2011); and the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, USA. (2009). In 2013 he took part in the main exhibition at the 53rd Venice Biennale, curated by Daniel Birnbaum.