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First Look: Prada and Carsten Höller’s The Double Club in L.A., a Collaboration With Drake and Luna Luna

It’s a full-circle moment for Carsten Höller.

The German artist was among the first visitors to the original Luna Luna, the art theme park unveiled in Hamburg in 1987 showcasing rides and games crafted by Salvador Dalí, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Keith Haring and David Hockney among others. And this week he’s unveiling The Double Club, a collaboration with Luna Luna — which has since been revived in downtown Los Angeles — and Prada.

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“It’s naturally falling into place, given my history of working with Prada,” said Höller, whose environmental art has made its way to Miuccia Prada’s office, which contains one of his metal slides.

This is his third edition of The Double Club, a traveling art project originally commissioned by Fondazione Prada.

“The idea for The Double Club is two parts or two entities that don’t fit together, that you put together in the same space and at the same time,” he explained. “And you try to avoid this becoming a mixture, like some kind of fusion. You want to keep it apart. You want to experience two things at the same time.”

The first one opened in 2008 in a Victorian warehouse in London while the second was in Miami during Art Basel in 2017, in a 1920s film studio complex. For the third, he used a vintage carousel, roller coaster and spinning chair swing as a means to investigating “spectacle, fun and delight through the lens of contemporary art,” notes Prada.

Prada’s The Double Club in L.A.
Prada’s The Double Club in L.A.

Each installation is different, but all are tied to Höller’s artistic practice; with a background in science, he’s known for applying scientific elements to his art.

“It’s about taking a certain surface of space, dividing it in two and then taking this one half and divide it again in two,” he said of his work. “Then, take one quarter and divide it again in two and so on. So, basically, by dividing half of it into two again and again and again and again, we would in principle end up in either infinity or zero, because it’ll just go on until there’s nothing left. So, it’s about making things disappear, but at the same time creating a very strong logic for a division. And I think that’s how we understand the world.”

Prada’s The Double Club in L.A.
Prada’s The Double Club in L.A.

He combined the abstract concept of division with the visitor experience to create “a very personal feeling of enjoyment,” he said. He also looked back on the original Luna Luna.

“This new iteration of The Double Club is really a reflection upon that,” he added. “It’s a completely new way of how you deal with art and entertainment.”

Rapper-actor Drake invested in Luna Luna’s restoration through his entertainment company DreamCrew, spending a reported $100 million to rebuild the works lost for decades in shipping containers in Texas. He and Höller curated a musical program for the installation, open to Luna Luna ticket holders this weekend for two days only.

It’s timed with the 96th Academy Awards, hosted by Jimmy Kimmel on Sunday.

Los Angeles is a very good place for doing such a project for quite obvious reasons, and, you know, the Oscars, it’s bringing a lot of people into town,” Höller said.

Carsten Höller
Carsten Höller

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