Tape Paris By Numen/for Use

When was the last time you looked at a roll of sticky tape and imagined creative potential beyond its humble uses? The guys at Numen/For Use, a euro design collective, obviously saw something in that little roll of stickiness that most of us didn’t, and created Tape Paris — their latest installation that uses sticky tape as its structural basis.

It took 12 pairs of hands, a ladder, and ten days to transform the Palais de Tokyo gallery into a biomorphic playground. Some 44km of sticky tape (yes, 44!) was used to create a labyrinth of gossamer-like inhabitable tunnels that precariously hang 6m above the gallery foyer.

However, Tape Paris is anything but unstable, with the structure possessing enough tensile strength to support the weight of five humans at any one time. Once inside, visitors can navigate their way through a 50m stretch of tortuous passageways — lined with elastic film and flexing to interior movements while retaining its shape —as bemused onlookers play witness to the activity from below.

According to the creators, Tape Paris delves into the murky territory of both physical and psychological interiority, thematising immersion, introspection and probing of the depths of self. It fuses architecture and sculpture into a corporeal concept that creates new meaning for dead overhead space.

Curious folk might like to know that this is not the first time Numen/For Use has displayed its artistic tape flair. The team also produced a tape installation not that dissimilar in Federation Square in Melbourne a few years ago entitled, you guessed it, Tape Melbourne.