Entering the Darkness: How it is

At the Tate Modern I ventured into the vast steel moonless chamber of the current Unilever series installation by Mirosław Bałka.

It’s hard to know what to expect until you enter the first wave of darkness, but no matter how daunting, curiosity gets the better of you and lures you in. Within the first few steps you are absorbed into the inky black and walking forth suddenly becomes an ordeal for which you did not come prepared. Nevertheless, there you are faced with an echoing blind space and you wonder ‘what’s in here?’.  I kept a few paces behind a group of teenagers in white tops, my arms outstretched. I don’t have much faith in my eyes but the white teen ghost shapes washed in and out of my vision and it was comforting to gauge a tiny piece of space.. Eventually I heard a thud and a giggle and knew they’d reached the end.  I stopped and waited for my eyes to conclude their adjustment.

Despite walking past the structure in The Turbine Hall, on the way in, you lose faith in your memory of it’s dimensions. In truth I had some idea of where the sides of the chamber ought to be, but with no point of reference I felt part certain I was walking into walls and part re-assured this darkness had no boundaries.

It was a delightfully vulnerable experience.



Filed under observation

2 responses to “Entering the Darkness: How it is

  1. wolfeyebrows

    Sounds amazing. Did you go to the Gormley exhibition a few years back when he did a similar thing with mist and white light?

  2. So sadly I missed that exhibition but I saw the little men all over London and hoped they would stay.

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