A Luminous Pavilion Where Breathing Flows Freely

At a meditative new installation by Ekene Ijeoma, viewers inhale and exhale within a giant circle of inflatable columns that change in brightness to illustrate soothing breathing techniques.

“Breathing Pavilion” by Ekene Ijeoma. Photography by Kris Graves

Here, we ask an artist to frame the essential details behind one of their latest works.

Bio: Ekene Ijeoma, 36, Brooklyn. (@ekeneijeoma)

Title of work: Breathing Pavilion

Where to see it: The Plaza at 300 Ashland Place, Brooklyn, until May 11.

Three words to describe it: Calm in chaos.

What was on your mind at the time: Covid-19 pandemic, systemic racism, presidential elections, collective loss, stress and grief, Tricia Hersey AKA the Nap Bishop, rest as a form of reparation, air, breathe, collective meditation.

Ekene Ijeoma. Photography by Kris Graves

An interesting feature that’s not immediately noticeable: Looking at the outside from afar, the columns look like they’re metal and acrylic but they’re air-inflated two-toned textiles. Furthermore, from inside you’re surrounded by white noise from the fans in the columns.

How it reflects your practice as a whole: It reduces the message of breath and meditation down to its essence through form and experience.

One song that captures its essence: Another essence of the work is finding self-love and inner peace, which I feel in Mos Def’s Umi Says.

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