Your Eye Is My Island by Pipilotti Rist

Following a successful collaboration between Kvadrat and Louisiana Museum of Modern Art for Pipilotti Rist’s first major presentation of her work in Denmark: Open My Glade, the international contemporary artists’ work is being showcased in a retrospective at The National Museum of Modern Art, Kyoto.

The exhibition is made of some 40 works, dealing with themes such as the body, women, nature, and ecology. Functioning as a complete overview of Rist’s approximately 30-year career, the retrospective encompasses everything from the artist’s early short videos focusing on the female body and identity; a recent large-scale video installation, which gently extols a symbiosis between nature and humans using state-of-the-art video techniques; a new work that incorporates pieces from the museum collection; and an outdoor work fashioned out of recycled materials.

With playful and immersive video experiences, which enable the viewer to relax on a bed and sit around a dining table, the exhibition restructures the relationship between the viewer and the museum in the era of the coronavirus, while also gradually unravelling pressing themes in contemporary society by means of the viewer’s body.

Kvadrat is delighted to support the exhibition with its textiles, Waterborn by Aggebo & Henriksen and Revive by Georgina Wright. The upholstery textile, Waterborn has been used to create an atmospheric curtain that covers the walls for the work “4th Floor to Mildness”. This art piece captures close-ups of aquatic scenes that Rist had overlooked in the past, such as small air bubbles attached to the underside of a leaf, a variety of living creatures, light seeping through a hole in a worm-eaten leaf, mud, and algae. These fragmentary images are projected on a cloud-shaped screen suspended horizontally from the ceiling as visitors lie down on randomly positioned beds, where the textile Revive had been used, and look up at the work from below. As you watch the images you have the illusion that you are underwater.

This situation, in which our muscles as well as our mind and body are relaxed, encourages us to re-examine the institutional taboos and preconceived ideas of the museum.
Exhibition dates
6 April – 13 June 2021

Opening hours:
Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Sunday: 9:30am – 5:00pm
Fridays and Saturdays: 9:30am – 8:00pm
Monday: Closed, except 3 May
The National Museum of Modern Art, Kyoto26-1,
Okazaki Enshoji-cho,
Sakyo-ku, Kyoto, 606-8344

Pipilotti Rist

Pipilotti Rist was born in 1962 in Grabs, Switzerland. She lives and works in Zürich. The artist was called Lotti (her full name is Elisabeth Charlotte) and added Pipi to Lotti the day she started in 1982 at the Universität für angewandte Kunst in Vienna, where she studied graphic design and animation and began making Super-8 films.

Alongside her studies she created stage designs or ‘visuals’ for various bands. In 1988-94 she was a member of the band ‘Les Reines Prochaines’. Since the end of the 1980s Rist has had a wide-ranging international exhibition practice and stands as a significant figure and pioneer on the contemporary art scene with her many-faceted works.

Solo exhibitions of her work have been presented internationally at venues including Louisiana, Denmark (2019); MCS, Australia (2017); New Museum, United States (2016); Kunsthaus Zürich (2016); Kunsthalle Krems, Austria (2015); Times Museum, Guangzhou, China (2013); Leeum, Samsung Museum of Art, Seoul, South Korea (2012); Fondazione Nicola Trussardi, Milan (2011); the Hayward Gallery, London (2011); the Wexner Center for the Arts, Columbus, OH (2011); Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, Rotterdam, the Netherlands (2009); the Museum of Modern Art, New York (2008); Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris (2007); and the Contemporary Arts Museum Houston, TX (2006); among many others. Rist was awarded the Harper’s Bazaar Art China Prize (2013), the Zurich Festival Prize (2013), and the Joan Miró Prize (2009).

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