Pattern: Follow the Rules
Opens March 21, 2013
Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum, MI
Pattern: Follow the Rules looks at new definitions of the well-worn art historical terms Pattern and Decoration, presenting an international group of artists who contend with the different roles these elements have played across a range of cultural contexts in history. Today, new technologies, including digitization and computer programming drive artists’ abilities to innovate form and materials and there is a marked movement afoot in artists’ use of science, math, and technology to generate forms. Here, the definition of pattern is more akin to a mathematical pattern than a decorative one, though often the result veers into the language of rhythmic decoration. Importantly, these artists abandon (at least in part) traditional modes of using the hand and the mind in making aesthetic judgments, instead setting up a system of rules or a mechanical system to generate final form—a new way of conceiving of the relationship between form and content…
In a parallel vein, Zaha Hadid’s new Broad Art Museum at MSU is consistently described as a feat of digital engineering in architecture. Following her singular approach to making buildings that play with perspective, fluidity and optical illusions by manipulating traditional and innovative building materials, the building is extensively patterned on its façade and perspectivally varied in its interior. Art making has now moved well beyond the wall and the pedestal and into the architectural realm. The works in this exhibition will all be in dialogue with the building in which they are installed, picking up the tactics of Hadid’s design and exploring the potentially symbiotic relationship of art installation and museum architecture that has moved beyond the “white cube”. Like the museum building, art that take up these new definitions of pattern alter our interaction with the space around us and challenge our perception of what we see.
Artists in the exhibition include: Walead Beshty (b. UK); Teresita Fernandez (b. USA); Mark Grotjahn (b. USA); Wade Guyton (b. USA); Shirazeh Houshiary (b. Iran); Mai-Thu Perret (b. Switzerland); Ara Peterson (b. USA); Hugh Scott-Douglas (b. UK); Alyson Shotz (b. USA); Rudolf Stingel (b. Italy); Tam Van Tran (b. Vietnam); Pae White (b. USA); Christopher Wool (b. USA).
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