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For the 2013 Metropolis Festival held in Copenhagen, Denmark in August, the Berlin-based architectural collective Plastique Fantastique inflated a temporary structure on streets, in a courtyard, under a bridge, and even inside a church.
Aeropolis, the collective’s biggest project to date, was an air-filled structure referred to as a soap bubble, pneumatic machine, and magnifying glass. It was able to change shape to squeeze into its surroundings and gave the public an opportunity to experience familiar places in a whole new way. The bubble was set up at 13 locations in six districts throughout Copenhagen.
The bubble was made of fire-proof PVC and entered through a zipper opening on the side. It was used to host events as diverse as art, music, and dance performances; astronomical viewing; meditation and yoga classes; martial arts demonstrations; lectures; and a silent disco in one of the noisiest parts of the city.
It took under 20 minutes to inflate the 100-square-meter bubble. Ventilators kept the pressure inside the structure constant. It was able to change shape by expanding into open spaces or squeezing into the existing urban or natural environment.
Plastique Fantastique is a collective for temporary architecture that was founded in Berlin in 1999. It seeks to transform urban spaces and the way people view and interact with the world around them by occupying and mutating urban spaces and creating hybrid environments. In addition to the Aeropolis at the Metropolis Festival, Plastique Fantastique has also installed temporary structures in the United Kingdom, Spain, Germany, Sweden, and Italy.