In the opening scene of Terrence Malick’s 1998 film A Thin Red Line, Sargent Witt wanders around a desert island. This intimate moment between man and nature forms the basis for his Art Bar as Paiva melds it with his own fascination with the urban environment to redefine the convention of a retreat. Featuring a series of sculptures, film projections along with resting nets, Room Service places a contemporary spin on the concept of sanctuary.

room service from Joao Paiva on Vimeo.

Taking reference from Hindu vernacular architecture such as ancient temples and sacred sites as well as motifs of residential buildings from present-day life, Paiva coalesces the past with the present. Projection screens made of semi-transparent glass and fabric hang from the ceiling and permeate the space. These screens inundate spectators with videos of abandoned places in Bali– from ruins of tourism infrastructures that have been recaptured by nature to daily commodities displayed in shop fronts.

Paiva further creates the ambience of retreat and the merging of artificiality with the natural by placing fans throughout the space. These emit a light breeze and move the projection screens, fabricating the motion of trees swaying in the wind. Room Service is a place where time stands still – transporting visitors from the mundane to the mystical, from daily life to the immersive realm of nature.