we miss you magic land!

‘we miss you magic land!’ 2011 | Gallery of Modern Art, Brisbane

To delight children and families, artist duo Pip & Pop created a spectacular installation ‘we miss you magic land!’ especially for the Children’s Art Centre.

Tanya Schultz and Nicole Andrijevic are inspired by fairy tales from all over the world, creation myths, Buddhist cosmologies and video games. One of their favourite inspirations is the land of Cockaigne, a mythical place of plenty which first appeared in French poetry in the thirteenth century. Descriptions of Cockaigne abound in stories of streets paved with pastries, houses made of cake and skies raining cheese and chicken drumsticks.

Adopting the mantra ‘more is more’, Tanya and Nicole embark on shopping sprees, buying up the gaudy baubles and trinkets found in dollar stores, pet stores and supermarkets. Online orders are placed for modeling clays, polystyrene balls, pom poms, sequins, florist wire, glitter, wax and glue and — especially for this particular installation — colossal orders of 600 kilograms of sugar (equating to 3000 cups) and 3000 kilograms of sand were delivered.

In a process akin to alchemy, the artists transform these everyday materials into beautiful glittery terrains. Sugar crystals and sands are combined with pigments to create every colour and shade of the rainbow. Funneled through cake decorating tools the artists form lacy patterned landscapes reminiscent of Tibetan sand mandalas. Toy animals, porcelain objects, crystals, sequins and paper origami constructions are placed to populate the scenes. The result is a series of magical worlds where make-believe meshes with reality.

If you haven’t already, treat yourself and visit ‘we miss you magic land!‘ at the Children’s Art Centre, GOMA before it closes on 4 March. You might also be interested in viewing the magic of the installation.