Hans Schabus

Barbican—The Curve

The Curve gallery in the Barbican—one of London’s major performing-arts centers, located in a landmark Brutalist housing complex built between 1965 and 1976 on a thirty-five-acre site destroyed by bombing in World War II—is notorious for its awkward ninety-yard-long semi-circular shape, which curves around the back of the stage of the center’s main concert hall as a sound buffer. Hans Schabus, an artist perhaps best known for having surprised visitors at the 2005 Venice Biennale by radically transforming the Austrian pavilion into a large-scale replica of a mountain peak, was an inspired choice to deal with such a challenging spatial layout.

Schabus discovered that the height and length of the main crescent-shaped wall of the gallery are slightly greater than those of the interior of a Boeing 747. For the main work shown here, the installation Next Time I’m Here, I’ll Be There (

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