press release

The MIT List Visual Arts Center (LVAC) is pleased to announce the upcoming exhibition, Cerith Wyn Evans: Thoughts unsaid, now forgotten… which will be on view from October 7 through December 31, 2004. Welsh artist Cerith Wyn Evans' new site-specific projects explore the complex relationships between image and word, poetry and science, divination and earthly communication, and spoken and written language. The exhibition is to be presented simultaneously with a selection of Wyn Evans' works at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (MFA). Together, the two exhibitions make up Wyn Evans’ first comprehensive museum exhibitions in North America. The opening reception will be on Thursday, October 7 from 5:30 to 7:30PM.

The exhibition consists of several installation components. Upon entering the gallery, the viewer will be greeted by her or his own image in Wyn Evans’ signature convex mirror sculpture, Perverse, Inverse, Reverse (1996). An alternative version of this work will also be on view at the MFA. The space will be shared by The Slide Rule Man, a MIT audio recording from the sixties of a man who traveled between the science-based schools inscribing students’ names on their slide rules. Three Asian scholar’s rocks, borrowed from the MFA, will be displayed in proximity to the audio piece. These hybrids of nature and culture exist today between the realms of nature and art, and are displayed as sculpture continuing Wyn Evans’ investigation into the aesthetics common to scientific and artistic vision.

The next installation component will include Thoughts unsaid, now forgotten… (2004), a reversed-text neon work commissioned by the LVAC for this exhibition. The work will face a large plate glass window onto a well-traveled courtyard. The sharp, bright neon image will reflect off the glass even in daylight, so that from the inside the reflected text will appear readable, like a caption for the view outdoors or subtitles in a film. IMAGE (Rabbit's Moon) by Raymond Williams (2004), a black Venetian-glass chandelier, spells out in Morse Code a text by Raymond Williams defining the word "image" from his seminal text "Keywords - A Vocabulary of Culture and Society," and connects to a computer monitor that translates the Morse Code back into the texts. The sky is thin as paper here... (2004), a new slide-projection piece using a special dissolve unit, casts layers of black and white astronomical images with historical pictures of exuberant traditional celebrations from Japanese festivals.

Finally, WMBR Radio Station is the actual wood-paneled studio from MIT's student-run radio station. Wyn Evans has taken the original 1960’s wood-paneled broadcast studio from WMBR, MIT's radio station, and installed it in a corner of the gallery. The five elements of the station pay respect to past technologies and the time before the Internet when radio was an important tool for communication. MIT's radio station was, and continues to be, famously inventive using the latest technology to foster free expression. On this equipment the station explored disco and reggae in 1974 and punk in 1976. The major themes of Wyn Evans’ work–information, poetry, art, science, and communication–are all incorporated in these exquisite relics.

About the artist Born in South Wales in 1958, Cerith Wyn Evans graduated from the Royal College of Art in 1984. He began his career as a video and filmmaker and worked as an assistant to filmmaker Derek Jarman. During the 1980s, Wyn Evans made short experimental films that have been screened in Britain and abroad. He also collaborated with choreographer Michael Clark and taught at the Architectural Association in London for six years.

In the early 1990s, Wyn Evans began making sculptures and installations. He employs a variety of media such as neon, orchids, fireworks, film, photography, and sculpture to explore his ideas on perception and conceptual limits. His work deals with the phenomenology of time, language, and perception. Wyn Evans’ first solo exhibition as a visual artist was held at White Cube, London, in 1996, for which he created an installation entitled Inverse, Reverse, Perverse consisting of a large concave mirror that inverted and radically distorted the viewer's reflection, producing a disturbing self-portrait.

Wyn Evans has exhibited extensively in Europe, including the Hayward Gallery, London, and The British School at Rome, and to a lesser extent in the United States, at such venues as Deitch Projects in New York. More recently, Evans has had solo shows at the Kunsthaus Glarus, Switzerland, and Georg Kargl, Vienna. He presented his acclaimed work Cleave 00 for the first time as part of the Art Now series at Tate Britain in 2000. Cleave 03 (Transmission: Visions of the Sleeping Bard, Ellis Wynne) was presented at the 50th Venice Biennale last summer. Evans beamed a light into the night sky that signaled a Morse Code translation of a text by Ellis Wynne, a founder of Wales’ high literature tradition. A computer in the inaugural Welsh Pavilion displayed the text. A second work by Wyn Evans was included in Utopia Station, one of the major group exhibitions organized for the Biennale.


Cerith Wyn Evans: Thoughts unsaid, now forgotten…