Artist and designer Es Devlin’s outstanding works challenge standard ideas about stagecraft and its role in society. Straddling art, opera, dance, theater, fashion, and music, her practice has revolutionized forms of kinetic sculpture. Her designs have filled millions of people with wonder, from the Rio 2016 Olympics ceremonies to astonishing set designs for touring superstars such as Kanye West, Adele, Lady Gaga, the Rolling Stones, and U2, as well as opera, ballet, and stage productions in the world’s major cities.
The immersive book Es Devlin: Suspension of Disbelief examines the changing nature and scale of Devlin’s work—from solitary, contemplative pieces to collective, stadium-sized experiences. Through extensive process work, including sketches and behind-the-scenes photographs, this volume highlights and celebrates the unique breadth of her output. More than sixty projects are featured from across the globe, including Devlin’s designs for Beyoncé‘s Formation tour and her stage collaboration with Julie Taymor on A Midsummer Night’s Dream. In-depth project case studies and commentaries by design curator Andrea Lipps are interleaved with thematic texts and interviews with those who have worked with Devlin in the worlds of theater, opera, architecture, pop music, design, and art, including stellar names such as Sam Mendes, Bjarke Ingels, Anna Wintour, and Benedict Cumberbatch. Es Devlin: Suspension of Disbelief is a monograph on an incomparable talent whose work connects with popular audiences, as well as an indispensable resource for design professionals and students.
Es Devlin is a London-based artist. She is also the winner of numerous awards, including three Olivier Awards and an Order of the British Empire.
Andrea Lipps is associate curator of contemporary design at the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum in New York.