Look up. It's a bird. It's a plane. No, it's giant tentacles bursting out from the top of a building in Mumbai. Yes, you read that right. Enormous inflatable tentacles were spotted atop a building in Turner Road junction in Bandra. This piece of installation art was brought to the good folks of Mumbai by none other than Luke Egan a.k.a Filthy Luker, a renowned mixed-media artist from Bristol, England. He is famous for his public interventions in urban spaces, created with his trademark larger-than-life inflatable sculptures around the globe.
Filthy Luker’s partner-in-crime is the celebrated designer Pete Hamilton. Together they established Designs in Air, a pioneering inflatable design company that creates original inflatable sculptures and visually stunning installations that have been featured at many major exhibitions and events around the world. The duo works with a dedicated team of specialist machinists, riggers, and technicians whose passion is to create large inflatable displays in manifold spaces. Designs on Air have inflatable sculptures for sale and they also do commissioned works where your ideas can become a sculptural reality.
Over the years, the duo used maths and a creative perception to design the patterns for their sculptures. They dedicatedly stitched their own sculptures on industrial sewing machines with an intricate understanding of the inflatable medium. As the company grew, it began to use 3D design software to create its sculptures and brought in talented technicians to keep up with all the sewing, develop lighting, and upscale their rigging applications.
The giant tentacles installation spotted in Mumbai was a part of the three-month-long Mumbai Urban Art Festival (MUAF), an initiative by St+art India Foundation and Asian Paints, that began on 21st December 2022. MUAF was a city-scale endeavor that included landmark murals, experiential exhibitions, immersive installations, and public programs across major venues in the urban landscape. St+art India Foundation recently opened a first-of-its-kind urban contemporary and post-graffiti art gallery, Gallery XXL, where you can also find Filthy Luker's inflatable tentacles swarming about.
Check out more of Filthy Luker's works here.
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Mumbai's Gallery XXL Is Bringing Post-Graffiti And Urban Art To An Indian Audience
"Sassoon Docks Found Us": How St+Art Is Shaping The Legacy Of Homegrown Urban Art