Olafur Eliasson is one of Scandinavia’s most-renown artists and holds significant influence in the global creative industry. Unlike many other his other works, Your Rainbow Panorama is a permanent installation and became a defining piece of his career.
Visitors can access the building’s rooftop and get this large glass walkway formed in the color spectrum. The work itself provides a 360 degrees view of the city. The artwork was officiated on top of ARoS Aarhus Kunstmuseum, Denmark in May 2011. Eliasson designed and facilitated the work as part of an art competition to transform the rooftop of the museum.
The creation is enormous and hence paints an impressive picture in everybody’s mind. It extends from one edge to the other of the façade. It was put on top of a cubic museum building, designed by Schmidt Hammer Lassen architects. This makes it a pleasing place to visit.
The work consists of a circular walkway that is almost 150 meters long and three meters wide. The walkway is made of glass in all the colors in the spectrum. This work was mounted on slender columns of 3.5 meters above the roof. The columns have a diameter of about 52 meters.
The total weight for the walkway is approximately 140 tons. The steal bearing the support beneath is about 100 tons. They are all laminated with a composition of up to 4 colored foils. This is what creates the discrete shades in the rainbow panorama.
Eliasson ensured that the project is secured and stabilized against the impact of wind. It’s fitted and secured with the main buildings construction and in four places in the roof. Furthermore, the area is naturally ventilated to make sure visitors have enough and clean air. This happens via some small and controlled systems of dampers. The work also ensures full accessibility even for people that have impaired walking.
Video: Your Rainbow Panorama
How do you feel inside the rainbow?
As you walk approaching the museum, you have to look up to notice the playful structure. If you are far enough, you will notice that this is a beacon but a fascinating place to orient yourself in the city.
Your Rainbow Panorama has pleased many visitors. As you move around the Rainbow Panorama, you have a sense of an endless loop that transitions with ease from one color to the other. When you stand still at the project, you will notice that the world outside appears almost monochromatic, but the details are heightened.
The more you stand in one place, the more you adjust to the color of that specific pane. This is what makes the tint grow pale. Additionally, Aarhus is cold during most months, but the climate inside Your Rainbow Panorama is moderate. This is what encourages people to visit the work throughout the year.
Olafur reacted as he was responding to the praise of this work and said that he has never worked a lot to achieve success. He’s quoted saying that he only does half of the work. Eventually, his audience does the rest of the work. They contribute to the work by visiting it.
If you are very careful with many of Eliasson’s artworks, you will notice that he uses “Your” in most of the titles. This is not just the case in Your Rainbow Panorama but also with other works. Name them: Your Space Embracer, Your Invisible House, Your Waste of Time, and many others.
This artwork is a success for many reasons. It is a gift to the citizens of Aarhus as it is expressed in the title and comes alive only with your participation.
All images: Public Delivery/publicdelivery.org unless otherwise noted.