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Pipilotti Rist: "Eyeball Massage" exhibtion at Hayward Gallery
Rist creates films – playful, psychedelic, sensuous, and often provocative – exploring themes and imagery of birth and death; family and love; the body and the natural world.

LONDON.- Swiss artist Pipilotti Rist is one of the world’s leading contemporary artists, a pioneer of video art, acclaimed for her innovative installations. This is her first major public survey show in the UK, presenting videos, sculptures and installations, and bringing together over 30 works spanning her career from the 1980s to today. Highly accomplished technically and rich in dazzling colour, Rist’s practice fuses sensual images, music, and sometimes text to create mesmerising works. The exhibition will transform the gallery’s lower spaces and includes new works specially created for the Hayward.

Rist creates films – playful, psychedelic, sensuous, and often provocative – exploring themes and imagery of birth and death; family and love; the body and the natural world. By exploring size and scale, high and low technology, the natural world and the urban environment, Rist invites her audience to question ways of seeing and experiencing art, and to constantly change their perspectives – visitors to the Hayward Gallery will be able to peer down at a naked human being beseeching them from a tiny hole in the floor in Selfless In The Bath Of Lava (1994), and envelop themselves in the meditative landscape of Lobe Of The Lung (2009).

Rist continually reinvents the art of installation, presenting her films in diverse and imaginative ways from simple single screen video to environments conceived for particular space. She creates a total sensory experience for her audience and directly invites visitors to, in her words, ‘get a flash of consciousness, to expand their possibilities of feeling and orientation’. The Hayward will present Rist’s single screen videos and full-bleed large scale projections; monitors in a suspended bathing suit; inside shells and handbags; projections onto a chandelier made of underpants; onto a model of a suburban house; and directly onto the lap of a visitor. Outside the galleries work will be shown on a shelf in the Hayward Gallery Shop and projected on the floor of one of the gallery toilets.

One of Rist’s most well known works is Ever Is Over All featuring two endlessly looping, overlapping videos – one of a field of giant exotic flowers and the other of a woman strolling along, shattering car windows with a stem of a flower will be shown alongside in the Hayward Project Space.

Female protagonists are common in Rist’s films, such as in the early work I’m Not The Girl Who Misses Much (1996) where Rist dances frenetically, repeating the speeded up line borrowed from Beatles’ Happiness is a Warm Gun. Associated with the Feminist art movement, Rist rethinks the visual presentation of the body and its relationship with the camera – in Pimple Porno (1992) she subverts the idea of the sex film, whilst in Blood Room (1993/1998) she visualises menstruation.

The exhibition is curated by Dr Stephanie Rosenthal, Chief Curator, Hayward Gallery. It will tour to Kunsthalle Mannheim, from 24 March to 24 June 2012.

The exhibition is accompanied by a fully illustrated catalogue conceived in close collaboration with the artist. Essays by Stephanie Rosenthal, Elizabeth Bronfen, Chrissie Iles and Stefanie Müller explore the many aspects of Rist’s art, while a visual essay by the artist provides a unique insight into her working methods.

Pipilotti Rist (b. 1962) lives and works in Zürich. Since emerging on the international art scene in the mid-’80s, Rist has had numerous solo and group exhibitions. In 1997 she was awarded the Premio 2000 for outstanding achievement at the Venice Biennale for her audio video diptych Ever Is Over All (1997) and she represented Switzerland at the 51st International Biennale di Venezia in 2005. Recent solo exhibitions of her work include Centre Pompidou, Paris (2007); MoMA, New York (2008 – 2009); and Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, Rotterdam (2009). She was awarded the Joan Mirò Prize 2009 for her wide-ranging creative activity and her outstanding contribution to the current artistic scene. A solo exhibition ‘The Tender Room' opened in March 2011 at Wexner Centre for the Arts in Columbus, Ohio. She won a number of awards for her first feature film Pepperminta (2009), including President of the Jury’s Extraordinary Awards, 6th Seville European Film Festival, Spain (2009), and the Cutting Edge Award at the Miami International Film Festival (2010). In 2009 Rist’s work Extremities (smooth, smooth) (1999) was included in the group exhibition Walking in My Mind at the Hayward Gallery.

Also on show at the Hayward Gallery this autumn, George Condo: Mental States will open in the upper galleries on 18 October 2011.

Eyeball Massage | Pipilotti Rist | Hayward Gallery |

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