Black Balloons by Tadao Cern

With a stark color palette and very succinct explanations, artist Tadao Cern’s work is both minimal and complex, using black balloons, helium, and metal frames to create works of art. His clever use of helium to float balloons within metal boxes is fascinating, and gives his work a sense of magic and precision. ┬áHis installations start simple, with two balloons, and quickly multiply, until the stark white room is filled with a fleet of hundreds, beautifully arranged in perfect rows.

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For an extensive amount of time I had an idea to connect two balloons. I found a free minute between the other currently run projects, bought two balloons, and got overwhelmed by the result.

It was so unpretentious and so magical at the same time! That opposition created by two very simple and playful objects once again brought a unique childlike sense of discovery.┬áThis experience uncovers a lot and the more one looks at it, the more it becomes true: “simplicity is genius”.

For the first test I only used two balloons and two different gasses: helium and sulfur hexafluoride – the light and the heavy ones. Later on I worked out how to make the balloons float in the middle of a glass tank without connecting them to anything.


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The metal frame holds a row of perfectly straight balloons

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Impressive room height allow these balloons to be showcased in a dramatic grid fashion

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Cern has a range of frames to allow for impressive scale for his installations

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A full room’s worth of balloons look excellent in rows

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Cern even plays with enormous balloon shapes, which give a more ominous feel to the art

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A fascinating minimal series of work

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