Born in 1964, the prolific Liam Gillick was one of the artists – including Damien Hirst and Angela Bulloch – who dominated British art through the 1990s. He’s spent years as the post-conceptual crowd-pleaser, with a controversial solo show in the German pavilion at the Venice Biennale 2009 only the most recent triumph. His sculptural forms and settings seem terse, yet, writes curator Robert Fleck, “they evince a strong – almost celebratory – intellectual presence.” This monumental 256-page, full-color catalog serves as a comprehensive mid-career retrospective, compiled by the artist himself. With his muscular combination of words, forms and ideas, the works are both narrative and non-narrative. For example, in “The State itself Becomes a Super Whatnot,” a vivid aluminum and Plexiglas installation derives, in the artist’s words, “from Brazilian research into Scandinavian car production.” Gillick has created over 2000 multi-dimensional works exploring – in his casual, playful yet deeply political way – ideas about capitalism, social organizations, social volatility and the myriad possibilities of instability. The New York-based artist’s quest has continually been something of a causal chain that investigates concepts such as utopia, parallelism, space and time, using them all as a search for utopia. As Gillick says, “One long walk … Two short piers …” The definitive volume so far on this incessantly interesting and rigorous artist. With texts by Nicolas Bourriaud and Isabelle Moffat.
Hardcover / 9 1/2 x 11 inches / 256 pp / 500 color
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