With his artificial rain cloud installations, Dutch artist Berndnaut Smilde has quite literally taken the art world by storm. The transient indoor clouds, spotted on Slate, are made by combining smoke machine fog with moisture. While the cloud puffs last only seconds -- just long enough to be photographed -- the process leading up to the creation can take days.
“I’ll change the space for better light and elements I want to have in or left outside the framework I’ve chosen,” writes Smilde. “There is some pressure to get the right one (photograph), but sometimes in the early stage of shooting I already know I’ve captured the image but we keep producing since you never know if you’ll get an even better one; it’s addictive.”
The fleeting works are open to interpretation, but seeing clouds out of their natural context, aided by dramatic lighting, lends the work an ominous tone.
“People have always had strong metaphysical connections to clouds as they symbolize the ominous, fertility, luck and divinity,” wrote Smilde. “They also embody a cartoon-like visualization … in order to deal with situations we cannot fully grasp, we give them a meaning or shape just to ease themselves."
Photos: Cassander Eeftinck Schattenkerk