Paula A. Vidal

Out of Season Shelter 2022


Paula Vidal presented her project Out of Season Shelters (OSS), in GlolauAIR Art Space, Monopol, and Vorfluter Projektraum. An art installation that investigates and questions the terms ‘beauty’, applied to pristine nature, and ‘ugliness’, to humanized nature, in order to criticize the aesthetic values implicit in the concept of ecology.

What is OSS? It is an installation that reinterprets the agrarian architecture of the greenhouses of Almeria, Spain. Criticized by national and international media for the ugliness of this sea of plastic that extends over 360 km2. An area slightly larger than the city of Munich and the world’s largest concentration of this intensive agriculture, whose fruits and vegetables grow encapsulated to satisfy the manifestation of its true ugliness: the whimsical consumption of out-of-season products from northern European countries, especially Germany.

OSS, ironically, transforms the greenhouses’s image into an idealized scenography. Seeing beautiful what seemed horrible allows us to ask ourselves. What is ugly? The greenhouses? The reviled projection of consumption whose limits we do not see, just as we do not see the end
of this sea of plastic? the anti-ecological burden of plastic?

Paula Vidal uses the greenhouses’ skin, plastic, that reveals landscape’s anthropomorphism, to create an idealized scenography with pneumatic structures that will cover vegetables. By removing the burden of ugliness from plastic architecture, the aim is not to affirm or defend it, but to disarm the critique of aesthetics so that the real questions that allow for social change can emerge.