After spending years dazzling young ones with balloons, this once entertainer has figured out a way to employ his craft in a different fashion, art.
Balloon genius Jason Hackenwerth will be constructing four large-scale balloon sculptures for the latest exhibition at the New Children’s Museum, Animal Art. This exhibition features multiple artists and explores how and why animals excite the human imagination.
Though the idea of creating a balloon animal seems like a cakewalk, these structures are not your usual latex creatures.
Armed with just an air pump, hundreds of balloons and his mother (who came as his assistant), Hackenwerth worked five days to construct his first sculpture, the Trilodon, which spans a vertical space of more than 40 feet.
“Jason arrived on our opening weekend and started building in a live studio space that allowed him to engage directly with our visitors.” Said Melissa McLean, New Children’s Museum Exhibitions Coordinator.
According to the exhibition’s site, Hackenwerth’s animals are invented creatures, inspired by the look of microorganisms and the structural engineering of natural forms like coral reefs.
While all his animals are imagined, his sculptures mimic real animals in that the sculptures experience an observable life cycle—over time, the creatures will slowly age as they wilt, droop and eventually expire.
Hackenwerth views the temporal nature of his work as an “essential truth that mirrors the natural life process of all living things.”
The next balloon installation will be in January. Animal Art opened to the public on Oct. 11 and will run for 18 months