Saturday, June 18, 2011

Ephemerally luminous: "Constellations" at Cornerhouse, Manchester UK

Kitty Kraus, "Untitled," 2008. Courtesy the artist and Galerie NEU, Berlin. 

25 June–11 September 2011

Kitty Kraus, Takahiro Iwasaki, Katie Paterson, Felix Gonzalez-Torres

Constellations presents a series of artworks that reflect impermanence, ephemerality and movement. Featuring internationally acclaimed artists Kitty Kraus, Takahiro Iwasaki, Katie Paterson and Felix Gonzalez-Torres, each of the artists are interested in ideas of fluidity and flux, creating a shifting landscape that evolves and changes over time. Constellations presents an active exhibition that is never static or fixed in its presentation but continually offers different perspectives of the work on every visit.

Constellations runs at Cornerhouse, Manchester from 25 June until 11 September and admission is free.

The exhibition includes Kitty Kraus' Untitled, a hauntingly beautiful work in which ice, infused with black ink, gradually melts on the gallery floor leaving behind pools of murky liquid that spread in patterns around which viewers must weave their way; and the first UK showing of Katie Paterson's 100 Billion Suns, a special confetti cannon which will be fired once daily, blasting out 3216 tiny pieces of paper, the colours of which correspond to Gamma Ray bursts—the brightest explosions in the universe. Each second-long explosion creates a miniature version of these vast cosmic events. Paterson is also exhibiting her celebrated Earth-Moon-Earth, which involves the transmission of Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata to the moon and back.

The sculptural landscapes of Takahiro Iwasaki's work made delicately from cloth, tape and wood, construct the undulating contours of mountain ranges forming and changing over an eternity. The unstable existence of the work means it will settle and shift over the duration of the exhibition, swayed and disturbed by air-flow through the space and the movement of people. Untitled poster stacks by the acclaimed artist Felix Gonzalez-Torres are an endless supply of takeaway posters depicting the sea, inviting the audience to remove the work until nothing is left. Here Gonzalez-Torres uses the sea as a metaphor for transience, time and travel. Water appears throughout all of Gonzalez-Torres' major bodies of work—the image is a reflection not only of the literal, transient nature of travelling from one place to the other, but more importantly captures the essence of a moment.

At the core of the exhibition is the idea of a constellation not as something fixed, but an organic, evolving grouping with chaos and chance at its core.

Curated by Karen Gaskill and Michelle Kasprzak.

70 Oxford Street
Manchester UK, M1 5NH
T + 44 161 200 1500

Galleries open:
Mon: Closed
Tue-Sat: 12:00–20:00
Sun: 12:00–18:00 

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