Curated by: Ruijun Shen
Pipilotti Rist sees the world with the curiosity and unblemished eyes of a child. In her eyes, even the most ordinary things take on new life and limitless possibilities. Up close, far away, up, down, glimpsed or twisted, the world takes on new depth and dimensions in Pipilotti Rist’s vision. Boundaries melt away and you can move freely through time and space. There are always surprises and never a lack of possibilities. Everything has been turned upside down.
Pipilotti Rist’s art combines video and space to give the audience a unique experience of wandering through time and space, bringing every cell in your body into a fantastical, dreamlike atmosphere. Her art is a world sensed not only with your eyes but with the motion of your body, your ears, your sense of touch and the resonance of the people around you. Your body will sway with her artworks, sometimes standing, sometimes lying down, sometimes walking, sometimes being embraced by them. It is like an unexpected encounter that moves you to reassess the world around you and your own existence. The relationship between the body and nature is spoken without words. Her videos blur the boundaries between reality and fantasy, warmly embracing your sentiments by “yielding,” letting you take the lead, letting you fill her art with your emotions and creativity.
The Guangdong Times Museum is situated on the top floor of a residential tower. Rist has abandoned the lofty, unreachable stance of the art museum, re-envisioning it as a medium for transmitting her spirit to the masses. She has penetrated the substantial space of the art museum, extending her art into the museum garden and into the lives of the museum’s neighbors, creating the outdoor installations Innocent Lanterns. She uses mischievous methods to insert strangeness into the everyday lives of local residents. This “strangeness” is like a mote in your eye, drawing your attention to another side of reality, showing you the danger beneath the glamor.
Rist has devised the 75 meter-long installation Mercy Mercy especially for Guangdong Times Museum, as well as creating artworks with locally sourced materials, such as Relax Your Eyeball, made with locally collected glass lenses. These artworks are the results of her exploratory visit to Guangzhou last year.
Guangdong Times Museum is on the outskirts of Guangzhou, where the city meets the country. It is a microcosm of Chinese urbanization. Through the museum space, Rist has inserted her woven Technicolor world into the complex, contradictory and vibrant Chinese social reality. Take a close look and think about it, what have we gained from the towering changes of the past decade? As the fields around the museum fade away, what are we loosing? At night, when the neighborhood residents gather to sing and dance, what can we learn?
“Gentle Wave in Your Eye Fluid – A Pipilotti Rist Solo Exhibition” looks forward to making waves in your heart with this visual feast.