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Takis, Boule électromagnétique

“I have felt spatiality through magnetic fields. That is my instinct. I am an instinctive savant. But Pythagoras spoke before I did. Energy is everywhere. Energy floats, it is circular, it spirals, it surrounds us. And with my work I wish to vitalize spaces with energy.” - Takis

Greek artist Takis (born as Vassilikis Takis in 1925 in Athens) has devoted most of his artistic life to research into magnetism. As an instinctive savant, Takis believes all communication occurs through magnetic fields. Magnetic energies are his primary, unseen material, which he stages in all manner of ways so as to render them visible. Takis has consistently translated this poetic approach to science into works that sensitively deploy the forces of nature.

In 1968-1969 Takis was invited to work as a fellow at the Center for Advanced Visual Studies at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology to investigate magnetism in an artistic way. For Takis, science and art are closely related. It is perhaps not so much the nature of the results obtained, but the starting point, the very act of questioning, which makes artists and scientists similar. Both artists and scientists are looking for answers to universal questions. They both engage in research, which involves venturing into the unknown. The results of their creative processes can reveal the beauty that lies beneath the surface.

Though he carefully works with matter, with respect for its nature, the material aspect is not the most important dimension of Takis’ work. The artist believes that the essential does not reside in the visual but in what cannot be seen, in the space-between.

With his Signals, Magnetic Walls and Musicales, Takis makes invisible energies palpable and invites the spectator to enter into a wordless, energetic dialogue with the sculptures. In a way he both literally and figuratively charges the void, in order to make it eloquent. Instead of working with representations, the works are presentations of energies for us to engage with directly. Instead of communicating via symbolization and language, the works’ impact is immediate. Takis also makes us aware of our fragility: the works have a tangible effect on the viewer, who is touched by energies emitting from the work, which the artist claims can have a harmonizing effect.

Rendering the void positive as a director of energies, in his works Takis invites viewers to engage with the Fourth Dimension.

Object information

Cork, magnets, iron wire, plexiglass, cupper and electrical system
162 - 1968
320 x 55 x 55 cm
Piasa, 25 November 2015, lot 32.

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