Large-scale globe casts Earth in an emergency-red glow

Large-scale globe casts Earth in an emergency-red glow

Currently on display in the ‘Air’ exhibition, Mona Hatoum’s large-scale globe Hot Spot 2006 maps the continents in startling red neon, casting viewers in an emergency-red glow. Hot Spot is at once a map and model of the Earth: an underlying structure laid bare; an energy system; and a stainless-steel cage measuring just over two metres in circumference.

Air | Timed tickets on sale
GOMA, until 23 April 2023


Expansive and inspiring, ‘Air’ at the Gallery of Modern Art (GOMA) in Brisbane showcases more than 30 significant Australian and international artists, reflecting the vitality of our shared atmosphere. Presented across the entire ground floor of GOMA, the exhibition is a journey through this invisible, ethereal and vital element, reflecting on awareness of our shared atmosphere as life-giving, potentially dangerous and rapidly warming.

Mona Hatoum ‘Hot Spot’

Installation view of Hot Spot (detail) 2006, ‘Air’ GOMA 2022 / Photograph: J Ruckli © QAGOMA

‘Hot spots’ are often understood as distant conflict zones that are seen as ‘other’ or isolated. By extending a sense of heat across the entire globe, Hatoum complicates this sense of distance, suggesting that geopolitical conflict affects us all. Hatoum proposes our whole planet is a hot spot, constantly redefined by the struggle for power: whether through war, disease, social unrest or structural inequity. Hatoum seeks to bring the experiences of those suffering or living without freedom into the gallery, creating a space of shared social consciousness.

Throughout human history, globes have symbolised travel, freedom and discovery but Hot Spot conveys a world that is wired, dangerous and overheating. With global warming affecting every region on Earth, today the work assumes a new environmental urgency as a sizzling omen of change to come.

Edited extract from the accompanying exhibition publication Air available at the QAGOMA Store and online.

Mona Hatoum, Lebanon/United Kingdom b.1952 / Installation view of Hot Spot 2006, ‘Air’ GOMA 2022 / Stainless steel and neon tube / 230 x 223 x 223cm / The David and Indrė Roberts Collection / Courtesy: The Roberts Institute of Art, London / Photographs: M Campbell © QAGOMA

Air’ / Gallery of Modern Art, Gallery 1.1 (The Fairfax Gallery), Gallery 1.2 & Gallery 1.3 (Eric and Marion Taylor Gallery) / 26 November 2022 to 23 April 2023