Plane Landing “Art” Project


Aleksandra Mir is a Lublin, Poland born modern artist, who has previously claimed herself as the First Woman on the Moon in 1999 – among other strange artistic projects. My colleague, Péter has brought my attention to one of her latest artworks, which is referred to as “Plane Landing“.

Cameron Balloons Drawing

Plane Landing goes back to 2001, when she first came up with the idea of creating a special, large balloon with the shape of a landing passenger airliner and inflate it at places, where we would not expect to see a jet airplane. Then it turned out to be a relatively complicated engineering project at Cameron Balloons of Bristol (the company that gave us Darth Vader, Coke Bottle or Flying Cow shaped ballons just to mention a few) where the actual balloon was designed and manufactured. It became a science project rather than art at this stage with aeronautics, engineering and design playing the major roles.Cameron Balloons At WorkPlane Landing First Test Inflation - c by aleksandramir.info

The balloon became an impressive one:

  • Length = 20.8 meters
  • Wing span = 15 meters
  • Volume = about 100 cubic meters
  • 4 different fabrics = white gas fabric (white gas fabric with overlaid silver), black hyper last for the go-faster stripe, black window fabric and red doorframe artwork fabric.
  • Approximately = 1 km of thread and heat sealed seams

It was first inflated in Compton Verney, in the UK in 2003 with three successful test inflations and with the first crowd gathering around it in the park. Mir usually prepares a collage or a sketch of the location where she is planning to land the plane – and after approval she lands it. We have no information on where the plane had spent the following five years – maybe at the Mojave desert among the other parked planes or simply flying in the air – but the next documented landing only happened in July 2008 ,when the plane arrived in Switzerland. Contrary to the original idea, it showed up in a place where we would most expect it to be: at Zürich Airport! It was first inflated at dawn at the place where the plane observers watch actual planes touching down, while the second landing took place overnight at the airport tarmac, in front of Gate 44.

Plane Landing in Zürich 1

Plane Landing in Zürich - c by aleksandramir.info

Plane Landing in Zürich - c by aleksandramir.info

Plane Landing Art Project at Zürich Airport Gate 44 - c by aleksandramir.info

Just a little more than 3 months after landing in Zürich, the plane arrived to dowtown Paris in October 21-22-23, 2008 with inflations around the most famous locations such as the Eiffel Tower or the in front of the Louvre. You can see all Paris pictures at aleksandramir.info.

Plane Landing Art Project in Paris - c by aleksandramir.info

Plane Landing Art Project in Paris - c by aleksandramir.info

Plane Landing Art Project in Paris - c by aleksandramir.info

I’m not fully convinced that this project can be categorized as art, but I very much like it as a gig, and hope to hear about its next landing somewhere in the near future!

Aleksandra, if you happen to read this post and plan to land the plane in Budapest, Hungary, please let us know, we would help you with organization and some publicity!

by balint01

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2 Responses to “Plane Landing “Art” Project”


  1. 1 Aleksandra Mir April 5, 2009 at 11:02 pm

    Hello, what a wonderful post. I am not sure if you qualify as art critics, but you sure know the world of aviation and that is good enough for me. I would love to bring the plane and land it in Budapest. I was just waiting for you to ask!

    Aleksandra

  2. 2 balint01 April 6, 2009 at 10:53 am

    Aleksandra, thanks a lot for your reply. Let’s start to work on this project and make it a reality!

    Zsuzsa and Bálint


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