Brazilian contemporary artist Ernesto Neto recently realized a colorful sculpture made of hand-knotted cotton strips in the atrium of Zurich's Central Station. Titled Gaia Mother Tree, the installation resembles a giant tree and extends from the station's roof to its floor.
Exhibited by the Fondation Beyeler, Neto's sculpture is an immersive work of art, a space that one can enter into and walk around or remain and meditate. The Gaia Mother Tree will be on display until July 29th. A series of activities for adults and children, including musical concerts, workshops and debates, is scheduled to take place under the net of cotton.
Sam Keller, director of the Fondation Beyeler, estimates that almost a half-million people will pass through the station and, consequentially, the sculpture. This would make Gaia Mother Tree the most visited work of art in the history of Switzerland.
Ernesto Neto is one of the most internationally recognized Brazilian artists, and his works address, among other things, issues related to spirituality, humanism and ecology. Strongly influenced by the neo-concrete movement of the 1960s, minimalist and conceptual art, Neto's production has been characterized by his use of materials and techniques not common to art - from organic objects to knowledge and craft of indigenous peoples.
To watch the video and learn more about Gaia Mother Tree, visit the Fondation Beyeler webpage. And see the photographs taken by visitors using the hashtag #beyelerneto.