Epic sculptural Ernesto Neto’s exhibit is on view through Sept 26 at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston.

The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston will have you walking on air this summer. The epic sculptural 79-foot labyrinth crocheted by Brazilian artist Ernesto Neto is a complex of interactive pathways all suspended in mid-air. The massive, spiraling SunForceOceanLife comprises yellow, orange, and green materials that are hand-woven into engaging patterns, resulting in one of Neto’s largest works to date.

Born in 1964 in Rio de Janeiro, the artist has captivated audiences around the world with his multi-sensory environments, fiber-based installations that plunge viewers into a multi-sensory landscape of organic elements: people are encouraged to walk through canals of stretched yarn and grasp the structural weavings, while spicy scents like turmeric and cumin are often diffused throughout the room.

I hope that the experience of this work will feel like a chant made in gratitude to the gigantic ball of fire we call the sun, a gesture of thanks for the energy, truth, and power that it shares with us as it touches our land, our oceans, and our life

Ernesto Neto

Plastic balls also fill the pathway and shift underfoot, which forces those passing through the suspended structure to intentionally maintain their balance. Neto explains: “It directly engages the body as does a joyful dance or meditation, inviting us to relax, breathe, and uncouple our body from our conscious mind. The sensation of floating, the body cradled by the crocheted fruits of our labor, brings to mind a hammock: the quintessential indigenous invention that uplifts us and connects us to the wisdom and traditions of our ancestors.”

SunForceOceanLife is on view at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston through September 26, 2021. You can see more of Neto’s interactive, site-specific projects at Galerie Max Hetzler


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