Immersed In Light: Studio Drift at the Mint

September 20, 2019 - July 26, 2020

Mint Museum Uptown


Studio Drift, founded by Dutch artists Ralph Nauta (b.1978) and Lonneke Gordijn (b.1980), creates breathtaking sculptures that explore the relationship between humanity, nature and technology. They established their studio in 2007, after graduating from the prestigious Design Academy Eindhoven. Their philosophy is based on creating a dialogue between opposites, exploring the relationship between nature, technology, and mankind. The studio’s work comes to life via ongoing collaborations with scientists, university research facilities, computer programmers, and engineers.

This exhibition will feature five works by Studio Drift dating from the last decade to today, most of which have been modified for the Mint, and one installation, Coded Coincidence, a conceptual prototype of Studio Drifts new work, premiering here. Their Fragile Future 3 (2009) light installation is a profound and poetic reflection on the fact that light is the basis and sustenance of all life. Formed of hundreds of tiny dandelion seeds that have been hand-glued, seed by seed, onto LED lights and held together by bronze electrical circuits, the work is a powerful testament to the transience of our life and times. In Twenty Steps is an installation constructed of 20 delicate glass wings that suggest a giant bird in flight. The glass emphasizes the fragility of the moment and of life itself. A variation titled Amplitude, shown at the Stedelijk Museum in 2018, will be included in Immersed in LightDrifters, a film by Studio Drift and Sil van der Woerd that features a floating block of concrete as it searches for its origin in the Scottish Highlands, is an exquisite exploration of the relationship between the built environment and nature, as well as escapism.  Representing the performance piece Franchise Freedom, which debuted on Faena Beach during Art Basel/Design Miami 2017, is the documentary film version accompanied by several actual drones. Simulating the flight patterns of starlings, clustering together and moving apart, Studio Drift created an autonomous swarm of 300 drones soaring through the night sky in a fluid, exhilarating choreography.

In 2018 the studio had their first solo exhibition at the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam. They have won numerous international design awards and have participated in group shows such as Design Society at the Victoria & Albert Museum (V&A) in 2016 and What is Luxury?, a collaboration between the V&A and the Crafts Council in 2015. Studio Drift’s work was featured at several major design fairs including Design Miami/Basel, Art Paris Art Fair, Dubai Design Week, artmonte-carlo, FOG Design + Art, and ZONA MACO. Their design works and site-specific installations are included in the permanent collections of the Rijksmuseum, SF MoMA, and others.

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