Monday, January 23, 2012

Otto Piene: Lichtballett

Otto Piene: Lichballett, the publication accompanying the recent exhibition at the MIT List Visual Arts Center, is now available. A leading figure in multimedia and technology-based art, Otto Piene was a founder, with Heinz Mack, of the influential Düsseldorf-based Group Zero in the late 1950s. This publication highlights the artist's ongoing exploration of light as an artistic and communicative medium. Piene's Lichtballett (light ballet) performances, first produced using hand-operated lights directed through perforated stencils, became mechanized in the 1960s. The artist's light sculptures consisted of motorized lamps, grids, and discs producing a flow of projected light; these machines evolved into kinetic sculptural environments of mechanized effects through the 1960s and '70s. Featuring Piene's own writings on light as an artistic medium, an essay by art historian Michelle Y. Kuo, and an interview with exhibition curator João Ribas, Otto Piene: Lichtballett documents the artist's pioneering investigation of art and technology. The monograph features a die-cut "light ballet" cover.

Here is a short clip of the exhibition:

And a review of the show from the Boston Globe:

"Hands down the most beautiful room in Greater Boston right now is a gallery in the MIT List Visual Arts Center. The gallery is just a small, windowless room. It’s dark, too - or it would be if it were not for an astonishing and constantly changing arrangement of patterned light orchestrated by 83-year-old artist Otto Piene." (More)

Monday, January 09, 2012

Untitled (12th Istanbul Biennial) Catalog


The catalog for the 12th Istanbul Biennial, edited by Jens Hoffmann and Adriano Pedrosa with coordinating editor Pelin Derviş, includes my essay "The Fourth Critique," on the relationship between art and politics in contemporary art. The catalog is one of three publications that accompany the exhibition, and is published by the Istanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts and Yapı Kredi Publications. Along with an overview of the exhibition, it also features essays by Jessica Morgan, Julieta González, Chus Martinez, and Aykut Köksal, as well as a number of texts by Hoffmann and Pedrosa. Via e-flux

Sunday, January 08, 2012

On Giuseppe Sacchi

Therefore. Because.
I've contributed a text on Giuseppe Sacchi, a 17th Century Italian painter, for If Mind Were All There Was: Nine Themes on Giuseppe Sacchi, an artist book by Victor Man, published by Kaleidoscope Press, Milan.

The book is a collection of texts inspired by a piece of graffiti in Piero della Francesca’s Legend of the True Cross. A horse depicted in the cycle of frescos bears Sacchi's name on its forehead. Yet no evidence of his work or biography exists apart from a short entry in a 19th century dictionary of painters and engravers. The contributors to the book were invited to "shape a possible (unauthorized) biography for Sacchi," and so "to reconsider the limits and possibilities of art writing." 

Contributors include: Maria Fusco, Massimiliano Gioni, Martin Herbert, Francesco Manacorda, Tom Morton, Alessandro Rabottini, João Ribas, Torsten Slama and Martin Vincent.
The book is available through MOTTO: 
ISBN 978 88 97185 09 3 - published by Kaleidoscope Press, Milan and Tramway, Glasgow