Hélio Oiticica: To Organize Delirium Audio Guide Playlist
Narrator: The large golden-orange sculpture hanging in the middle of the room is from a series that Oiticica called the Nuclei. Donna De Salvo.
Donna De Salvo: The idea of “nucleus” becomes very interesting of thinking of this as a kind of center and positioning yourself in relationship to it as you are part of the center. You are on the periphery. You almost have to think a little bit more about what is your relationship to the work.
Narrator: The sculpture is suspended above a mirror.
Donna De Salvo: Now, in today's world, we think of mirrors in terms of selfie. But it's interesting, in this case, he's really reflecting the work. But I think he's also suggesting a kind of infinity, because the mirror—and mirroring the image back up—really can suggest a kind of larger space. And I think this is where this idea of world is very interesting to consider you know—the nucleus as the center, maybe art as the center, maybe us as the center of things. But the mirror is already suggesting a larger world.
Narrator: The Nuclei include the viewer metaphorically. But at the same as Oiticica was developing that series, he began working on sculptures that the viewer could enter literally—the Penetrables. The first of these, a tall orange-and-yellow structure, stands nearby. Unfortunately, this one can’t be entered anymore—it’s more than half a century old, and fragile. But as you explore this exhibition, you’ll encounter a number of Penetrables that you can go into as Oiticica intended.
Donna De Salvo: It's really interesting in today's world to think about these kinds of participatory works. We're so much more used to finding these, particularly in any modern and contemporary art museums. In Oiticica's moment, this was a serious, also political act, of bringing the viewer into an active engagement with a work of art. You completed the piece. And it's interesting to keep that in one's mind—to almost go back to that moment in time when this was a very radical gesture.
- 500 Hélio Oiticica, Introduction
- 501 Hélio Oiticica, Metaesquema
- 502 Hélio Oiticica, P58 Spatial Relief, Red (P58 Relevo espacial, vermêlho), 1960
- 503 Hélio Oiticica, NC6 Medium Nucleus 3 (NC6 Núcleo médio 3), 1961–63
- 504 Hélio Oiticica, B16 Box Bólide 12, Archaeological (B16 Bólide caixa 12, Arqueológico), 1964-65
- 505 Hélio Oiticica, B33 Box Bólide 18, Homage to Cara de Cavalo (B33 Bólide caixa 18, Homenagem à Cara de Cavalo), 1965-66
- 505-2 Hélio Oiticica, B33 Box Bólide 18, Homage to Cara de Cavalo (B33 Bólide caixa 18, Homenagem à Cara de Cavalo), 1965-66
- 506 Hélio Oiticica, Seja marginal, seja herói (Be an outlaw, be a hero), 1968
- 507 Hélio Oiticica, Tropicália, 1966-67
- 508 Hélio Oiticica, Eden, 1969
- 509 Hélio Oiticica, Rio Parangolés
- 509-2 Hélio Oiticica, Rio Parangolés
- 510 Hélio Oiticica, Babylonests, 1971
- 511 Hélio Oiticica, Topázion-Flor for Haroldo de Campos, 1975
- 512 Hélio Oiticica, Cosmococa
- 513 Hélio Oiticica, PN27 Penetrable, Rijanviera, 1979
- 514 Hélio Oiticica, Manhattan Brutalista (Brutalist Manhattan), 1978