Australian artist Ian Strange recently spent some time in lovely Poland where he has created a new site-specific installation, covering a former residential building in over 600 square-metres of golden wallpaper. Titled ‘ZŁOTY’- Polish for ‘Golden’- this work responds to the Załęże district’s history and decline following the collapse of the local mining industry.
Commissioned by the Intytucja Kultury Katowice, the talented artist worked alongside curator Michał Kubieniec and the Katowice Historical Museum to research his latest architectural intervention. Over 3-weeks, Strange and a team of volunteers meticulously applied over 600m of a golden wallpaper to the exterior of the home, using a design that replicated what was typically found in the rooms of many local homes.
The wallpapering places the home’s safe interior on the exterior, leaving it vulnerable to the elements. This gradual deterioration forms an integral part of the work. Just as Załęże own fortunes slipped from flourishing industrial mining town with the closure of its last mine in 2004, so to will the installation lose its shining veneer with time.
The installation is a continuation of Ian Strange’s ongoing body of work exploring the home. Highly regarded for his conceptual and architecturally charged practise, he has staged large-scale architectural interventions and exhibitions around the world. Strange has exhibited his works at the Canterbury Museum, National Gallery of Victoria and built full-scale sculptural installations of homes in Sydney’s Turbine Hall and on the forecourt of the Art Gallery of South Australia for the 2014 Biennial of Australian Art.