ããã — Fear of the Unknown remix
New York, 136 Tenth Avenue
Coinciding with the launch of London-based Lisson Gallery’s second space in New York is Haroon Mirza’s New York solo gallery debut that furthers his experiments with the sound and light as social vessels. The installation resumes Mirza’s work during his residency at São Paolo’s PIVÔ, where the artist resided for two months. The British artist, who previously exhibited his work at the New Museum, PERFORMA, and The Calder Foundation in New York, introduces a stronger discussion on the current U.S. politics in his new installation that absorbs viewers into a neon green lit installation.
While the alarming and hallucinatory effect of LED lights signals awareness and involvement for the audience, four TV screens hung at the end of the installation stream a discussion that looks at critical incidents within the last fifteen years around the globe. Beginning with 9/11 attacks in 2001 and reaching to recent election of Trump, the film makes stops in various topics such as global warming and emergence of patriotic and conservative politics in Western countries. Installed around the gallery, on the other hand, are a series of psychotropic plants that the artist had the chance to examine in Brazil. Contrasting to the social and political weight of subjects discussed in the video, these plants, similar to Ayahuasca of Amazons, suggest healing, contemplation, and transcendence, supplemented by the striking aura of green light.
“I’m content with the randomness if I can truly achieve it. Seldom do I think of rewiring something. It’s best (for me) when I have no idea how something is going to turn out. I like the idea that my work is always unfolding and has a sense of investigation and experimentation. I imagine, or rather hope, the aesthetic of my assemblages denote this sensibility in the same way as the Fischli and Weiss photographs and video works such as ‘The Way of Things’ might do. So it’s more rewarding when there is a process of discovery taking place and I can present that in its raw yet formalized form,” says the artist in an interview with Veronica Kavass.
The exhibition runs through April 1, 2017 at Lisson Gallery’s new 10th Avenue location.