Daniel Arsham’s solo show, “Alter,” opens December 1 at Miami’s Galerie Emmanuel Perrotin, galerieperrotin.com.
Daniel Arsham’s solo show, “Alter,” opens December 1 at Miami’s Galerie Emmanuel Perrotin, galerieperrotin.com.

“When we got this building two years ago, it was a factory, and the first project was to turn it into a studio. A year later I gave up my apartment in Boerum Hill [Brooklyn] because I was traveling so much, mostly to work on set design for Merce Cunningham in Paris, and I ended up crashing here a lot. Finally I decided we would build this room in the studio’s storage loft, modeling it after my bedroom in Hudson‚ New York, which is in the bell tower of a church. It’s small, but I’ve never had that much stuff, though I did give up all my furniture. Some people have told me it looks like I’m inside my work when I’m up here. The walls are covered with 25,000 handpainted Ping-Pong balls, which took two weeks to glue on; they make it harder to read the surface of the wall, which helps the space look larger. The mirrors on either end add depth, and I tried to simulate daylight with fluorescent lights diffused through glass. The only part I have left to finish is the skylight. One thing I would add to the space is a water source, because climbing up here with a glass is kind of impossible. I also have to remember to use the bathroom before I go to bed at night. But I’ve never had a close call on the ladder—the ladder in Hudson is five times as tall as this one, so I’m used to it. I’m not afraid of heights. I climbed a lot of trees when I was a child.”