robert wilson

Stage ma­gi­cian

Wallpaper - - October -

Hav­ing cut his cre­ative teeth on New York’s art scene in the 1960s and 70s, stage di­rec­tor Robert Wilson has since cre­ated some of the most mem­o­rable pieces in con­tem­po­rary theatre, fea­tur­ing min­i­mal sets and ground­break­ing sound and light. As Guest Ed­i­tor, he de­cided to ‘make the mag­a­zine more di­men­sional’. Since 2006, he had been mak­ing video por­traits of celebri­ties and an­i­mals, fea­tur­ing the key el­e­ments of his work – sound, light, cos­tume and set de­sign. He cre­ated a 16-page port­fo­lio of por­traits (plus a front cover fea­tur­ing Is­abella Ros­sellini) and then, with cre­ative com­mu­ni­ca­tions agency Dentsu Lon­don, em­ployed a pre-cin­ema tech­nique called Om­bro Cin­ema: by slid­ing a striped ac­etate sheet across the page, read­ers could make sub­jects such as Brad Pitt and a sumo world cham­pion move. QR codes gave ac­cess to videos and sound­tracks. ‘We are cre­at­ing some­thing that’s more in­ter­ac­tive, al­low­ing the reader to be a par­tic­i­pant in the com­po­si­tion,’ Wilson said.

While his work in theatre and opera con­tin­ues apace, Wilson has also branched out. He de­signed a pub­lic park in Helsinki in 2012, and last year cre­ated a chan­de­lier for light­ing com­pany Slamp, in­spired by his set for La Travi­ata. ‘Light is the el­e­ment that cre­ates space,’ he told us. ‘With­out light, there is no space.’

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