”The Ring” with Spencer Tunick

Spencer Tunick's "Ring" opened the 2012 Munich Opera Festival

The Bavarian State Opera opened the 2012 Munich Opera Festival with an installation by famed artist Spencer Tunick on June 23. Tunick's new work is entitled The Ring and in it about 1,700 of art lovers posed nude for the visiting New Yorker at several venues in downtown Munich. Tunick's artistic installation is inspired by Richard Wagner's great opus The Ring of the Nibelung and its new production by the producer Andreas Kriegenburg, which reaches its culmination on 30 June with the premiere of Götterdämmerung. Tunick used cosmetic body paint for the first time ever in an urban setting.

The participants met around 3 a.m. in the Munich city center to get naked for Tunick and paint their bodies with either gold or red body make-up. Right before sunrise at 5.15 a.m., Tunick had everybody in place for the first set-up on Ludwigstraße, one of Munich’s big avenues.

“With the images of Andreas Kriegenburg‘s stage production in mind, for this very special installation I intend to adapt motifs from The Ring”, Spencer Tunick explained. Hundreds of bodies painted red evoked the underworld of Nibelheim or the breath of the dragon from Siegfried. Right in front of the Opera house, Tunick had the participants representing the ring itself, this time painted with gold.

"Andreas Kriegenburg primarily tells his version of The Ring of the Nibelung by means of the performers‘ stage and gesticulation movements in addition to their singing. This produces an interesting equivalence to Spencer Tunick‘s human body installations. That is why it was an obvious choice to show these two projects for the Munich Opera Festival", says Nikolaus Bachler.

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