Joining a love for Mexican crafts, children’s toys, and art that only comes alive when participants sit, play, and spin around on it. West Palm Beach Waterfront has come alive this summer with The Spinning Tops (Los Trompos), a playful and colorful art installation that has been turning heads – and bodies – around the country. Los Trompos — 20, three-dimensional brightly colored, larger-than-life structures inspired by a famous spinning top toy — landed to continue the fun interactive public art installations the City of West Palm Beach has been providing.
Contemporary Mexican designers Héctor Esrawe and Ignacio Cadena created this interactive installation that lets kids and adults jump on the individual spinning tops and collaborate to spin the works and bring “Los Trompos” to life. Each top has a totally unique shape inspired by both nature and traditional Latin American design, weaving, architecture and Mexican folk art.
“Only through this interaction and collaboration will the work come to life and be complete,” said Cadena. “The concept behind the Spinning Tops –Los Trompos– is based on an approach of traditional toys, their colorful expression and the way they are constructed. We wanted to talk about the traditions and skills of the craftsmen in Mexico, as an inheritance of our culture. We like the idea of translating these techniques into new symbols” said Esrawe.
Esrawe and Cadena work together at their interdisciplinary design firm E+C® in Mexico City and have participated both individually and together in various projects around the U. S. and Mexico. Los Trompos was created by the designers during their residency at the High Museum of Art, Atlanta.
Los Trompos Photo Gallery
The “Los Trompos” continues a multiyear initiative by the city to activate the outdoor space and engage visitors in a meaningful art experience, carrying on the success of last years The Pool downtown, and The Musical Swings on Clematis a few months ago, which drew tens of thousands of visitors to the formerly empty, unused lot.
The design team is represented by two of the leading designers in Mexico today, Héctor Esrawe and Ignacio Cadena, based in Mexico City. Esrawe is an award-winning industrial designer as well as a celebrated furniture, interior and product designer. Inspired by traditional Latin American design, architecture and folk art, Esrawe’s works are playful, sometimes humorous, and organic.
Winner of the Bienal Iberoamericana de Diseño (2010) in the Interior Design Spaces category, Esrawe designed glassware for Nouvel Studio, with products available at Barneys New York, Saks Fifth Avenue and the Walker Art Center. Like Esrawe, Cadena also is creative director of his own firm CADENA+ASOC. CONCEPT DESIGN with over 20-years experience. Cadena’s collaborative designs explore the boundaries between art and science. His work is a result of collaborations and explorations in different fields that include installation, painting, graphic design, photography, sculpture, film, video, marketing, architecture & industrial design. The ability to jump from one discipline to another turns his work into hybrid expressions that nurture from one another.
Cadena’s work has been published, recognized and is an award-winner around the globe in multiple disciplines.
“We are inspired by ordinary objects that surround us. We are influenced by our context and our every day activities which allow us to visit and share with different cultures and different individuals. We are inspired by history, art, music, architecture, books and the city itself. We firmly believe that these are the goals of design to weave and generate interactions, human connections and emotions, to relate to users, and to enhance and translate our inheritance and skills into new expressions.” said the design team.
“It’s a fun, fun, really joyful installation,” said Sybille Welter, who coordinates the city’s Art in Public Places Program which is funded from real estate developers’ payments. The plan is to disperse the tops to public parks throughout the city after their three-month merry go round spin on the waterfront to keep the merry go round vibe going.
Presented by West Palm Beach Art in Public Places, this free art installation brightens the Great Lawn on the West Palm Beach Waterfront daily from 10:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m.