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Octopus

1968 Amsterdam, Netherlands
Coauthor: Theo Botschuijver, Sean Wellesley-Miller

Production: Eventstructure Research Group, Amsterdam

This eventstructure was commissioned specially for the public launch of the Stichting Octopus (Octopus Foundation), which took place at the Stedelijk Museum.

The work was an air-inflated object in the form of a large octopus with 25-metre-long tentacles. Before the performance began the creature was hidden under sheets of paper that were printed with imagery of the ocean seabed. When air was pumped into the inflatable, the octopus gradually burst out of this wrapper; first its head rose up, then its eight legs unfurled and slowly filled the room. Visitors spontaneously played with and entangled themselves in its long tentacles and dragged them out into other gallery spaces in the museum.

Octopus was later shown in the Crystal Palace Garden Party of 1971, a major rock event featuring The Faces, Mountain, Pink Floyd and Quiver.

Exhibition Record

1969:  Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, Netherlands

1971/5/15:  Crystal Palace Garden Party, The Crystal Palace, Hyde Park, London, England