I used to be indecisive…

…but now I'm not so sure

Roof Squares #28


In August 2015 the artist Charles Pétillion filled the roof space at Covent Garden Market Hall with an installation consisting of 100,000 illuminated balloons and called Heartbeat.  He said…

The balloon invasions I create are metaphors. Their goal is to change the way in which we see the things we live alongside each day without really noticing them. With Heartbeat I wanted to represent the Market Building as the beating heart of this area – connecting its past with the present day to allow visitors to re-examine its role at the heart of London’s life.

Each balloon has its own dimensions and yet is part of a giant but fragile composition that creates a floating cloud above the energy of the market below. This fragility is represented by contrasting materials and also the whiteness of the balloons that move and pulse appearing as alive and vibrant as the area itself.”

Unfortunately I saw it in the daylight, so didn’t quite appreciate the illuminated aspect of the piece.

Covent Garden Market, London

Covent Garden Market, London

Posted for Becky’s #RoofSquares challenge.


14 thoughts on “Roof Squares #28

  1. This is amazing. Never heard of it before. Like a cloud from Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory!

  2. We’ve walked along there, but not when the space was filled with balloons. I hope he didn’t have to blow them all up by himself.

  3. It looks quite effective even if not illuminated, Elaine. Reminds me of a light installation one year at Durham. 🙂 🙂

  4. That’s an awfully hoity-toity way to say, “I put up a bunch of balloons.”

  5. I like the idea behind this but after seeing the Sir David Attenboroughs Program on how much plastic is in the worlds oceans and seas, I would now like to see a ban on plastic balloons. Too many times a kid lets go of them and they drift away to land and litter who knows where. Heck adults let them loose deliberately at weddings, memorials etc too.
    The theme of trying to get people to think about what they see every day without noticing, perfectly sums up my blog, so of course I like this, I just think that artists need to lead the way when it comes to sustainability. It takes a creative mind to think of solutions and ways around using materials we do not want to see in our oceans or landfills after all.

    • You are absolutely right. I think people are just starting to realise what all the plastic we are using is doing, but I’m not sure that balloons would be something they would immediately think of as a problem in the way that we are being shown plastic bottles and straws in the ocean for example.

  6. Pingback: The 31st Day of June | The life of B

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