ArandaLasch creates the exhibition scenography for the Kaws retrospective in Shanghai

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Eight-meter-tall sculptures skim the ceiling of the Yuz Museum in Shanghai, which is currently hosting the first retrospective of artist Kaws in Asia and showcasing the exhibition design by Aranda Lasch.


The New York and Arizona-based design company, founded by Benjamin Aranda and Chris Lasch in 2009, based its design around the large-scale works produced by Kaws.

Design of the Aranda  Lasch KAWS exhibition for the Yuz Museum in Shanghai, China

“Kaws enjoys working with physical models, so we built a 15-foot-long model of the museum to familiarize ourselves with its enormous scale,” Aranda told Dezeen. “It used to be an airplane hangar and its size is quite misleading in the photographs.”

“The design engages the massive hangar space with simple but large architectural elements, a room and a wall, which serve to organize the artwork around them.”

Design of the Aranda  Lasch KAWS exhibition for the Yuz Museum in Shanghai, China

Kaws, real name Brian Donnelly, is known for his brightly colored, cartoon-like works and limited edition objects. The Brooklyn-based artist has previously painted his iconic designs on two basketball courts in New York City for Nike.

The exhibition, titled Where the End Starts, features key paintings, sculptures, drawings and toys that the artist created over the past 20 years of his career. It’s the first time he’s had a retrospective in Asia.

The largest pieces in the exhibition are contained in the great gallery room and almost reach the ceiling, which is eight meters high.

Design of the Aranda  Lasch KAWS exhibition for the Yuz Museum in Shanghai, China

Other smaller sculptures and paintings are scattered throughout the surrounding galleries.

“Designed as a kind of temple, the Great Hall is a space of intense concentration realized through an illuminated ceiling above the room, Passing companion“said Aranda.

Design of the Aranda  Lasch KAWS exhibition for the Yuz Museum in Shanghai, China

“Each of the surrounding galleries showcase different aspects of his work, from black and white works to his formative graffiti works to his smaller scale collectibles,” he continued. “These are not strict divisions, but they follow intense and focused production over the years. “

Aranda and Lasch founded their eponymous studio in 2009. Other company projects include a foam pyramid seating installation, shown at the Venice Architecture Biennale 2010, and a temporary pavilion designed for the Design Miami collectors.

Kaws: Where the End Starts is on display at the Yuz Museum in Shanghai until August 13.


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