Fridman Gallery – New York (US)

Infra Structures, Jan Tichy’s third solo exhibition with the gallery, continues the artist’s exploration into the politics of light. The exhibition comprises three new bodies of work.

The Installations (2022) series of photo gravures continues Tichy’s investigation and experiments with light as material. Over the last two decades, Tichy has created over 40 projection installations which have been exhibited around the world. With this series of etchings based on photo documentation of those installations, Tichy sought to move from the photographic medium to engraving and printing in order to rediscover light – this time outside of space – and to reveal a new range of shades and qualities of concentration and dispersion. Appropriately, the Installations prints are having their U.S. debut at Fridman Gallery, which exhibited five of the site-specific light projections over the last decade.

A new site-specific light projection, Installation No. 43 (2023) continues the artist’s practice of connecting the gallery to the political, economical and social infrastructures of its environment. Installation No. 43 illuminates an electrical cable perilously dangling from the ceiling of the gallery, manifesting decaying physical and political infrastructures. It evokes rolling blackouts and bombed-out power stations in Ukraine, and the dangers inherent in power generated from fossil fuels.

Presented in the gallery’s basement media room is a four-channel video installation Destroy All Monsters (2023), which mirrors the basement of Mike Kelley’s public artwork Mobile Homestead located outside the Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit. Kelly’s basement was a creative space for the artist and his band Destroy All Monsters, named after the original Godzilla movie. Tichy watched the 1968 film in the darkness of the basement, lighting up the walls with the glowing light of his screen. Filming the flickering walls and re-projecting them into a new space recreates the dark space with animated light. As we sense the violent flashes of Godzilla demolishing the physical infrastructure of the city, the light flickering in the basement suggests the erosion of seemingly impenetrable power structures above.