From the 1980s, Tomie Ohtake brought to the public spaces and areas of coexistence forms, which refer to the pictorial elements of her plastic production. In places of living within several cities, such forms are converted into kilos or tons of iron, concrete, steel, glass pellets or whatever is needed; such volumes that can achieve monumental scale, never appear to have the weight that actually have.
One of her first public works, that no longer existents but which generated various debates, was the floating star she designed for Rio de Janeiro in 1985. She built a metal piece, that stood out over the water with sunshine and was made in the same space and with the same infrastructure used to maintain ships. One of her works of great public recognition, made in commemoration of the 80 years of Japanese immigration in Brazil in 1988, she represented the generations of Japanese who were here (issei, nissei, sansei, yonsei) by four arches - or curves / Waves - of Avenida 23 de Maio. Twenty years later, she returned to celebrate immigration, this time in its centenary with a circular piece arranged in one of the access roads to the Guarulhos International Airport.
In 1997, she conceived his first three-dimensional work to integrate a building. Located in the complex of the Aché Laboratory - whose architectural design is authored by Ruy Ohtake, her son - the work, supported by a single point, works as a Moebius tape, a geometric shape in which it is not possible to distinguish sides inside and outside , Resembling the infinity symbol by its always continuous movement. Prior to this, Tomie Ohtake had already collaborated with architecture in the realization of panels, murals and paintings that relate to the projected spaces.
The artist's work procedure, when she set out to act on the architectural scale, began with the creation of sketches, collages, and quick mock-ups, often hand-made without compromising her strength. Then her imaginative models were made possible by collaboration with technicians and engineers, who employed sophisticated methods to translate their delicate forms into monumental sculptures.