Swiss Haute Horlogerie brand Audemars Piguet celebrated the unveiling of its 4th Art Commission, HALO, during Art Basel in Basel 2018. This year, the Audemars Piguet Art Commission was conceived and realised by British artist-duo Semiconductor, Ruth Jarman and Joe Gerhardt, in collaboration with guest curator Mónica Bello, head of Arts and curator at CERN, the European Laboratory for Particle Physics in Geneva. HALO, the large-scale, site-specific artwork, presents visitors with an artistic interpretation of the ATLAS experiment at CERN, and marks the first time that raw data from CERN has been utilised within an art installation.

The manufacture celebrated the debut of the 4th Audemars Piguet Art Commission with a press conference and cocktail party. Guests experienced first-hand the immersive installation, presented as a ten-metre-wide and four metre tall cylinder-shaped structure, made up of vertical piano wires and a 360-degree screen. Viewers were entirely immersed in HALO, surrounded by kaleidoscopic data projections generated by a series of slowed-down subatomic particle collisions that ordinarilly occur almost at the speed of light at CERN’s Large Hadron Collider (LHC). As they hit the screen, the animated data points trigger small hammers that proceed to reverberate the artwork’s body, emiting an all-encompassing vibration resonating throughout the artwork.

Artists Ruth Jarman and Joe Gerhardt of Semiconductor described the project, saying: “We’re interested in man’s signature on nature. Our aim is not to learn about the scientific knowledge, but seeing what it has become once it has been observed by man. This quickly becomes a process of pattern reading which is something we as humans are doing all the time. We want people to experience what we call a ‘technological sublime’, you don’t need to know anything about the science to do this. It becomes an experience”.

During Art Basel in Basel, Audemars Piguet also showcased the concluding design in a trilogy of lounge concepts by Chilean-born, New York-based artist and designer Sebastian Errazuriz, alongside a photographic series by London-based, Italian visual artist Quayola at the Audemars Piguet Collectors Lounge.