Painting by other means

Bruno Jakob Untitled (Horse)

We all know that odd phenomenon of inexplicably turning around because you feel someone staring at you.  Swiss artist Bruno Jakob’s invisible paintings seem to work with that kind of ethereal communication. He maintains that his paintings, which he’s been making for three decades now, incorporate the energy of thoughts and moods.  At times he seems to treat the surface of his canvases as though they were a type of specially sensitive photographic paper capable of capturing the unseen energies transmitted by living creatures (as in this photo of Bruno holding up a canvas to the gaze of his equine collaborator).

Book tickets for Invisible

Invisible: Art about the Unseen 1957 – 2012
12 June – 5 August 2012

Invisible Art brings together works from the past half century that explore ideas related to the invisible and the hidden. The exhibition includes work by some of the most important artists of our time as well as younger artists who have expanded on their legacy.

From the amusing to the philosophical, there are works you can observe and others you can take part in, such as Jeppe Hein’s Invisible Labyrinth. From Yves Klein’s utopian plans for an ‘architecture of air’ to Robert Barry’s Energy Field (AM 130 KHz) from 1968 – which encourages a heightened awareness of the physical context of the gallery- this exhibition span diverse aesthetic practices and concerns.

Many of the works in Invisible seek to direct our attention towards the unwritten rules and conventions that shape our understanding of art. Other works invoke invisibility to underscore the limits of our perceptual capacities or to emphasize the role of our imagination in responding to works of art.  Some use invisibility as a metaphor that relates to the suppression of information or the political disappearance and marginalization of social groups.

Artists in the exhibition include Art & Language, Robert Barry, Chris Burden, James Lee Byars, Maurizio Cattelan, Jay Chung, Song Dong, Tom Friedman, Carsten Höller, Tehching Hsieh, Bruno Jakob, Yves Klein, Lai Chih-Sheng, Glenn Ligon, Teresa Margolles, Gianni Motti, Roman Ondák, Yoko Ono and Andy Warhol.

Bruno Jakob
Untitled (Horse)
Invisible Painting/ Energy, 2003
Image courtesy the artist and Galerie Peter Kilchmann, Zurich

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