Thousands of balloons fill Covent Garden in London

Balloons took a week to inflate


Up, Up and Away in Covent Garden with an Exhibition of Thousands of Balloons

Covent Garden in central London is 'hosting' a unique exhibition of hundreds of thousands of balloons. It is the work of French photographer Charles Petillon, his first outside his own country.

The photographer is known for his work with balloons to create eerie images in everyday settings. His aim for this exhibition called Heartbeat is to encourage visitors to view Covent Garden in a different way.

The artist said: "The goal of it is to share with people this installation, to allow people to make their own photo, to have their own point of view. I have mine of course. But I will allow people to share this point of view."

A team of 25 took a week to inflate each of the 100,000 individually sized balloons weighing a total of 320 kilos.

'This is very original'

'Heartbeat' stretches 54 metres in length and 12 metres in width and incorporates gentle pulsating white light that illuminates the structure from within and which aims to symbolise a beating heart.

The work is designed to reflect the history, energy and dynamism of the district. A Spanish tourist said: "This is original and very different when you enter Covent Garden and see these balloons."

The balloon exhibition is part of an ongoing cultural programme at Covent Garden that has invited artists such as Alex Chinneck, Jeff Koons, Damien Hirst and Banksy to create pieces for the area.

You can catch 'Heartbeat' in the air in Covent Garden until the end of the month.

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