The Redball Project is an enormous, traveling public sculpture that is hard to miss, featuring a big, red ball that has been housed in cities all around the world. NYC-based artist Kurt Perschke starts by imagining the red ball as a part of different cityscapes, and then inflates the real ball into unexpected locations.
The inflatable ball molds itself into the surrounding architecture, creating the illusion that it has been jammed into small alleyways or used to hold up a bridge’s arch. Perschke also records how people interact with the big red ball, as their emotions go from confusion to tentative curiosity to wonderment to joy.
Through the magnetic, playful, and charismatic nature of the RedBall the work is able to access the imagination embedded in all of us. On the surface, the experience seems to be about the ball itself as an object, but the true power of the project is what it can create for those who experience it. It opens a doorway to imagine what if? As RedBall travels around the world people approach me on the street with excited suggestions about where to put it in their city. In that moment the person is not a spectator but a participant in the act of imagination. I have witnessed it across continents, diverse age spans, cultures, and languages, always issuing an invitation. That invitation to engage, to collectively imagine, is the true essence of the RedBall Project. The larger arc of the project is how each city responds to that invitation and, over time, what the developing story reveals about our individual and cultural imagination.
– Kurt Perschke