Daniel Arsham’s art shows how looks can be deceiving

His surrealist works will be on display at High Museum until May 21
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Daniel Arsham
Last call to see three installations from of-the-moment art star Daniel Arsham

Photograph by Alex Martinez

Appearances can be deceiving in artist Daniel Arsham’s playful, surrealist works. Solid surfaces warp and ooze, human figures seem to be hidden behind walls, and cameras and boom boxes are made to resemble crumbling artifacts. Inside this purple cave, the walls are lined not with rocks but sports equipment: basketballs, tennis balls, footballs, soccer balls. Look closer, and you’ll see something else: Instead of rubber or leather, the balls are made of calcified amethyst crystal, pockmarked with sparkly pitted edges. The sculpture is one of three installations by Arsham on display at the High Museum of Art through May 21. All are part of an ongoing series in which the artist casts modern-day objects as ancient relics. “It’s as if we’re viewing them on a future archaeological site,” he says. “I’ve always tried to make works that kind of floated in time.”

This article originally appeared in our May 2017 issue.

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