Desert Breath: A Monumental Land Art Installation in the Sahara Desert
Although it’s in a slow state of disintegration, Desert Breath remains viewable some 17 years after its completion, you can even see it in satellite images taken from Google Earth.
Desert Breath is a collaborative site specific project created by D.A.ST. arteam, (Danae Stratou, Alexandra Stratou, Stella Constantinides). It is an Earth Work that covers 100.000 m2, in the eastern Sahara desert bordering the Red Sea in Egypt. Its construction consists of the displacement of 8.000 m3 of sand formed so as to create precise positive and negative conical volumes. The conical volumes form two interlocking spirals that move out from a common centre with a phase difference of 180 degrees in the same direction of rotation. The centre is a 30-metre diameter vessel formed in a W-shaped section and filled with water to its rim.
The construction of Desert Breath began in June 1995 and was completed in March 1997.
The project is rooted in our common desire to work in the desert. In our mind’s eye the desert was a place where one experiences infinity. We were addressing the desert as a state of mind, a landscape of the mind. The point of departure was the conical form, the natural formation of the sand as a material. It is a site-specific work that grows out of our perception of the site its self. Located between the sea and a body of mountains at the point where the immensity of the sea meets the immensity of the desert. The work functions on two different levels in terms of view point: from above as a visual image; from the ground a physical experience while walking the spiral pathway. Desert Breath still exists becoming through its slow disintegration, an instrument to measure the passage of time.
Danae Stratou says about her work:
I imagine two parallel realities in the way that we view the world. There is the world inside and the world outside of us. It is through the senses that we are able to connect the inside to the outside world. My whole life, including the choice to become an artist, has been an attempt to re-search, to understand, and to connect these two parallel realities. To bridge what is within to what is without…
For more info go to: danaestratou.com