Tara Donovan

Tara Donovan

Sculpting everyday materials

Everyday materials like drinking straws, tooth pics and needle pins are elements used by American artist Tara Donovan, when she creates her amazing sculptural works: "Inspiration is a joke, real artists sit down and work" Donovan says.

Tara Donovan (b. 1969) is fascinated by everyday materials, which she turns into sculptures. She regards herself as a kind of scientist, investigating the potential of different materials, transforming and shaping them, making them transcend themselves and turning them into holistic Gestalten of their own. The element of light plays an important role in Donovan's artworks, as her materials take light in and reflect it different ways. “My sculptures become activated by the movement of the observer” Donovan says. Her works vary in size, depending on the surrounding architecture and the size of the room, they are shown in. She goes on to explain how the magic happens within the sculptures, underlining that her sculptures are artworks rather than critical comments. “I feel like my work is mimicking the ways of nature, not necessarily mimicking nature per ce.” Donovan states.

In the video we hear the voice of Tara Donovan, who doesn't like to be filmed. Her works are exhibited for the first time in Europe in February 2013 at the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art.

Tara Donovan was interviewed by Marc-Christoph Wagner at the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art.

Camera: Mathias Nyholm

Produced by: Mathias Nyholm and Marc-Christoph Wagner, 2013.

Music by Trentemøller.

Copyright: Louisiana Channel, Louisina Museum of Modern Art.

Supported by Nordea-fonden.

  • Diébédo Francis Kéré

    Architecture is a wake-up call

    "Architecture is much more than art. And it is by far more than just building buildings". Meet award-winning architect Diébédo Francis Kéré from Burkina Faso in this interview about his architectural philosophy.

  • Herta Müller

    Putin makes me sick

    "It's outrageous and it's far worse than what we had in our dictatorships back then", says German writer Herta Müller about Vladimir Putin and Russia's interference in the Ukraine.

  • Dan Colen

    From bad boy to favorite son

    "We were really like running wild and we spent a lot of time shutting the world out". American artist Dan Colen looking back upon his collaboration with fellow artists Ryan McGinley and Dash Snow while they were "destroying rooms" but in their heads thinking "we are not hurting anything".

  • Paterson & Atwood

    Future Library

    Come take a walk in the forest with Scottish artist Katie Paterson, who tells us about her artwork Future Library. And meets world famous writer Margaret Atwood, who will write this future library's first story, not to be published for 100 years.

  • Salman Rushdie

    A chance of lasting

    "I feel very proud to be part of this resistance", says the acclaimed British writer Salman Rushdie reflecting on his book The Satanic Verses and the years of the fatwa. "Today people are much weaker. I wonder if such an act of collective solidarity would ever happen again."

  • Darren Almond

    The landscape of the night

    The landscape of the night is like a Jackson Pollock painting - you know it's a Pollock straight away. You can read every mark within miliseconds, you feel the void, there is this calmness, that comes upon you. Interview with British artist Darren Almond about his series of full moon pictures.

  • Bill Viola

    The tone of being

    Aside from a magical visual side, Bill Violas videos are always accompanied by marvelous sound. In this interview Viola talks about the importance of sound in his work and how he is guided by a kind of 'undersound'.

  • Salman Rushdie

    A line had to be defended

    "It wasn't only about me. It was a moment, when a line had to be held when you could not concede the fight", says the author of The Satanic Verses, Salman Rusdie, in this outtake from a longer interview about his life and work.

  • Daniel Richter

    On Emil Nolde

    Emil Nolde was a Nazi - and so what, asks contemporary German artist Daniel Richter. "It's a moralistic debate. A debate, that mirrors the moralism and bigottery of a generation that seems to think, that the world is a moral playground."

  • John Giorno

    Poets are mirrors of the mind

    Meet one of the great originators of performance poetry, John Giorno, as he looks back at his first meetings with poetry, his great influences, the importance of performing without a book, and where poetry is headed in the future.

  • Sarah Sze

    The meaning between things

    ”A sculpture is constantly growing and dying at the same time. It is a parallel process of construction and deconstruction.” Meet contemporary artist Sarah Sze in her New York studio.

  • Ian McEwan

    Reading from 'Sweet Tooth'

    During the Cold War CIA and MI6 funded cultural fronts. To promote the open societies agents had to operate in deep secret, an absurdity that drew Ian McEwan to write the spy novel ’Sweet Tooth’, which he reads from here.