Red Sky at Night


Images: © Tim Etchells

Red Sky at Night is an accumulating installation that changes each day over the course of the exhibition, through the addition of new material. On day 1 a set of helium-filled balloons, with hand-cut cardboard letters H-O-P-E suspended below them on ribbons are installed in a line against the ceiling. This first set of balloons will stay trapped up against the ceiling through the hours of the gallery opening, until after 8 hours or so they  lose a little helium and start drifting from the ceiling. By next morning the first batch of balloons and letters are all  on the floor, most likely immediately below the place where they were installed.

At the start of day 2, a new set of 4 helium-filled balloons and letters H-O-P-E gets installed against the ceiling. These will again drop over an 8 hour period… and again come to rest on the ground. The next morning – day 3 – the same process of installing a new batch of balloons is repeated and so on. The process  continues daily through the exhibition, on all days the gallery is open to the public. Over the course of the exhibition, the floor beneath the balloons installed at the ceiling slowly fills with balloons from previous days and the work shifts from being a relatively minimal intervention in the space to being a rather sprawling, colourful and chaotic one.

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