To many in the field of art and stage design, Es Devlin is a household name. The British creator has worked with stars like Beyoncé for her Formation and Renaissance world tours, Kanye West’s Yeezus world tour, Kanye West Storytellers, Jay-Z and Kanye West’s Watch The Throne tour, The Weeknd’s After Hours Til Dawn World stadium tour, U2’s Sphere Residency, Lady Gaga’s Monster Ball and more. Aside from musicians, Devlin has also worked with fashion houses like Louis Vuitton and YSL alongside the Olympic Games, the United Nations and more. With 30 years under her belt, her resume is quite extensive and the aforementioned is just a piece of the history.
Entitled An Atlas of Es Devlin, the new retrospective takes a deep dive into the creative’s rich experience and story. Specifically, the retrospective reveals a complete catalog of process materials featuring sketches, maquettes, materials samples, notations, photographs and standalone artworks. By incorporating these pieces, the exhibition underscores how Devlin’s work has moved between the spaces of music, dance, art, sculpture, activism and poetry.
“My craft is to imagine worlds that don’t yet exist, to invite audiences to practice ‘interbeing’ within psychological architectures they have not previously inhabited, to remind viewers that they are not separate but connected to one another and to the biosphere,” said Devlin. “For this exhibition, I have gathered the drawings, fragile paper sculptures and small-scale revolving cardboard models that I and my studio team have been making over the past three decades, a miniature parallel practice at the root of the large-scale public performance and installation works.”
Take a peak at the retrospective in the gallery above. An Atlas of Es Devlin is open now at the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum until August 11, 2024.