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Nuit Blanche - Noel Dolla

Megan K. Fernandes writing for Vingt Paris
Photos by Joshua W. Neves

Image3On Saturday night, thousands crowded the walkways around the light installations at the Parc des Buttes-Chaumont, one of Nuit Blanche’s strongest showings. The most expanisve installation was an overwhelming three part display by artist, Noel Dolla. Dolla’s long career has been dedicated to seeking out new techniques and manipulations of fabric, color, and shapes. He is largely influenced the by monochromes of  Yves Klein and Jackson Pollock’s verticality. Dolla has often expressed his interest in displacing his spectator, creating a loose subjective space which allows the spectator to confront his own beliefs.

Unfailing in his philosophy, Dolla transformed the many surfaces of the park and orchestrated them into a playful and psychedelic conversation. On one sloping hill, a hundred rows of large red umbrellas were planted on their sides, a cemetery of giant mushroom head tombstones.  Across the umbrella field, onlookers would pause their cotton candy munching to see popping red and blue lights sweeping across the lake’s black surface. Flimsy paper boats were arranged in loose geometric designs on the lake, while a lonely few became tangled in a random light’s trajectory.

Image4One grinning participant enthusiastically circled the lake’s dancefloor with his portable stereo, blasting Bollywood music accompanied by a confused Michael Jackson routine. The grassy banks framing the waterway to the lake hosted the last of the three part installation. The ground was covered with large gold cardboard circles that reflected two overarching strings of lights and resembled a treasure of oversized coins or buttons, which some participants tossed like frisbees across the lawn. Overall the Noel Dolla experience was one of nostalgia, wonder, romance, and cheerful anonymity.

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