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PaperCity May 2024 Houston

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and that's a different sort of fun, interesting way to make work. But to have an intrinsic higher purpose instilled in the making of a work makes it feel more important and motivates us as makers to do the absolute best that we can do because installing something at the Nasher, in my mind, feels almost holy. It would hold that place in my spirit. And it reflects the level of attention and the brainpower that we put towards this show. CA: Where did the beads come from for The Strawberry Tree? Niki: We got them from a defunct factory in Murano that went out of business in 1982. We had to go into this factory with vines growing through it and puddles of water everywhere, and tarantulas and scorpions, and find these wooden boxes — the fact that they're in wood boxes means they're probably turn-of-the-century. We don't know the exact age. But the factory had been in business since the early 1800s. CA: On The Strawberry Tree after dark. Niki: We put it in front of the museum, where there's a wall of open glass, because we wanted everyone to be able to continuously experience it. And it's illuminated. I think the best experience will probably be at night through the window for someone that just happens to be walking by. CA: About Moon Towers, which stand guard outside the museum entrance. Niki: They're based on moon towers in Austin. Do you know the story? CA: Just that they're from another era and very archaic and fascinating. Simon: There are only six of them left in Austin. Basically, they make perfect moonlight. We grew up half a block away from one. So, we wanted to make our homage to the moon tower. We have a couple installed in Los Angeles as public works. We have some publicly installed in China. Then Jeffrey Deitch showed a group of them in his L.A. gallery, but the ones for Nasher get a special patina. The exact ones that are going to Nasher have not been seen before. I believe those will be there for longer than the duration of the show, which is exciting for us. CA: On your Austin roots. Which neighborhood did you grew up in? Niki: Clarksville. 12th and Blanco, that was our corner. You could see the Capitol building from our hill. Swede Hill is down the road. Simon: Lora Reynolds gallery is down the road too, which is cool. CA: While we're talking Texas, what was it like growing up in Austin? Were your parents creative? Simon: Our mom, Emily Tracy, was a screenwriter, and our dad, Berthold Haas, was a stone carver. He's also a sculptor and painter. We worked with him as kids doing stone carving. Texas has a lot of limestone. In various houses in Austin, you'll find something that we carved architecturally, but I don't remember all of the spots. Niki: Our mom wrote for Seinfeld and The Cosby Show. She was an opera singer as well and sang for the Santa Fe Opera. Our older brother, Lukas Haas, is an actor. So, our household was super eclectic hippie. A very Austinite family, but to the max, in terms of the art around us. Everyone was playing music all the time. We were brought up to think creative. We had to learn how to balance a checkbook later in life, but we figured it out. " H a a s B r o t h e r s : M o o n l i g h t ," May 11 – August 25, at Nasher Sculpture Center, Dallas, More with The Haas Brothers at Clockwise from top left: The Haas Brothers: Nikolai Haas, Simon Haas. Moon Towers, 2023. Cyberzoid 4, 2023. CHARLES WHITE, COURTESY THE ARTIST AND JEFFREY DEITCH IAN FLANIGAN CHARLES WHITE, COURTESY THE ARTIST AND JEFFREY DEITCH 58

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