Fantastic Planet #5: What’s That?
“I raise questions about our relationship with the natural world, communicating this through the use of; scale, drama, light, and humour. I aim to entice my audience with beautiful, mostly invasive (including us) or endangered species, standing prominent and dominant in their given habitats.” - Amanda Parer
Fantastic Planet is an artwork comprising of a series of giant illuminated humanoid figures which seemingly have just landed and are quietly and gently exploring our ‘fantastic planet’. The work is inspired by the 1973 Czech / French film La Planète Sauvage, directed by René Laloux, which depicts a story set in an unimaginably distant future in a world of gargantuan humanoids and where human beings are a feral race. This view is shared by naturalist David Attenborough, where he has stated that contemporary humans are threatening their own existence and that of other species by using up the world’s resources. “We are a plague on the Earth. It’s not just climate change; it’s sheer space, places to grow food for this enormous horde. Either we limit our growth, or the natural world will do it for us,” he told the BBC Radio Times, 2017.
In Look at Us Now, Fantastic Planet #5: What’s That? will land close to the Leuven train station. The work can be read in multiple ways: it becomes an emblem for our position on earth; larger than life. But beyond that, its posture signals something else yet: Is he trying to stand up, trying to move forward, perhaps after downfall? Or on the contrary, is he performing the opposite gesture; kneeling down, bowing to earth? Perhaps a gesture of humility.
Amanda Parer is an Australian artist who began her art career as a painter and sculptor in Sydney. From 2014 she started creating and presenting public art installations around the globe. Inspired by the dramatic Tasmanian landscape, Parer’s artwork aims to explore the natural world, it’s fragility and the role of humanity within it. Through Parer Studio, her work has been exhibited in over 100 cities and viewed by millions around the globe.