Belgian artist Oli-B looks to the skies for NetJets installation
For 17 years running, Netjets has partnered with Art Basel to welcome fair visitors with a dedicated lounge space, a celebration of the private aviation company’s commitment to art and design. It has traditionally commissioned artists to create site-specific works for its spaces – and this year was no exception as it called upon painter and street artist Oli-B to create a work inspired by air travel.
The Belgian artist’s signature style features graphic compositions of bold colours created through a variety of media, from spray paint to digital and screen-printing techniques. His works to date have included commissions for public spaces, sculptures and products.
For Art Basel this year, Netjets tasked Oli-B with illustrating the experience of traveling on one of its aircrafts. The artist created a large triptych of paintings – hung at the lounge’s entrance – and a series of smaller figures that adorn a corner of the space.
Oli-B’s installation may seem entirely abstract at first sight, but the artist has incorporated recognisable elements among the colourful shapes, such as a cockpit, or the nose and of airplane – but most of the sinuous forms are open to interpretations.
Oli-B create a small series of geometric paintings to accompany the larger triptych in the NetJets VIP lounge
There is no right or wrong here: Oli-B keeps this visual playground free of boundaries to let viewers imagine their journey through the images. Some visitors may see outlines of countries and geographic morphology; others might find stylised birds and clouds.
‘It’s a call to a dreamy journey,’ explains the artist. ‘When you fly, you can also dream, and to capture this quality I took inspiration from the design of a plane in the sky and the evasion of reality. The painting will invite visitors to travel in it, and bring them good feelings, serenity and positive energy.’ §