Berndnaut Smilde‘s work is defined by the temporary and the ephemeral. It lives for a few seconds and disappears, without a trace that it was ever there, documented only through photographs and video. The Avant/Garde Diaries recently recorded one of his clouds in the Green Room of the Veterans Building in downtown San Francisco. A small crowd was there to witness a smoke machine create billowing smoke forming a luscious, cotton candy-like shape in the middle of the Beaux-Arts chamber before it vaporized into haze, leaving its luminous ghost haunting the room. The shape of the cloud and its creation are of lesser interest to the artist than the jarring context and placement of the ominous cloud – something that normally exists outdoors – indoors.

See The Avant/Garde Diaries’ video below and more stills as well.