IDRIS KHAN, FRAGILE: 7 Howick Pl, London, 2009


In 2009, upon invitation from Italian investment group Estate4, we commissioned artist Idris Khan to create a permanent public artwork for the entrance of 7 Howick Place in London. 


Careful to respect the building's original Victorian character, Khan responded with Fragile, four films that are played across a set of LCD screens embedded directly into the pavement (the screens were specially developed for the project as it was the first ever outdoor art installation in the UK that used floor-mounted LCD screens). By setting the screens in the ground, Khan encourages viewers to looks down and walk over the screens; adding a potency and unique sculptural feeling to the installation. 


Within the films, Khan considers the nature of letter writing and the written word through depictions of letters and packages being handled in different ways, both literal and abstract. To produce these films, Khan collaborated with a set designer, architect, lighting designer and photographer in order to convert his studio into a surreal rendition of a 1950s post sorting office constructed entirely of cardboard, paper and tape.

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