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video projection in darkened room constructed to look like a back yard
video projection in darkened room constructed to look like a back yard

‘Die Geduld’ (2016) next to ‘Neighbors Without Fences’ (2020).  Photo by Tiffany Del Valle

Walking into Luhring Augustine on 24th Street, gallery visitors must pass a large red textile work quilted with multiple colorful patterns: Pipilotti Rist’s Textile Gleichzeitigkeit (Joey Foulard) (2023). More signpost than barrier, it still transports you into the world of the Swiss visual art pioneer. Rist’s “Prickling Goosebumps & a Humming Horizon” is a two-gallery show, on view now at Luhring Augustine and Hauser & Wirth’s West 22nd Street location.

At the entrance are small-scale works including Visual Cortex Dolomites (2022), a video installation projecting an oil on hardboard landscape, Seenlandschaft mit Dolomiten by Felix Heuberger. Heuberger’s original monochrome painting is flat and muted, with forest greens and grays illustrating a body of water in the foreground, a forest in the middle ground and faded mountains in the background. Rist’s video projection of the painting gives life by adding depth to the background and white highlights to the mountains. The sky becomes a vibrant electric scene with patterns similar to the Northern Lights in bright blues and greens. Across from the painting, a rock sculpture titled Respect Scholarly Rock Hong Kong (2022) is activated with a hypnotic video projection of abstract strokes of bright teals and greens. 

These works in the dimly lit and sanctum-like entrance presage the visionary excellence of Rist, whose work is in the permanent collections of the MoMA in New York, SFMOMA and the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum. 

Background music—piano carefully met with sounds of wind and birdsong—increases in volume as one gets closer to what appears to be a dark room but reveals itself to be Rist’s curated backyard world, Neighbors Without Fences (2020), a version of which debuted at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles. There is a full-scale façade of a clapboard house. The windows project neon abstract imagery, shown close up: colorful leaves, flowers and other foliage made for the exhibition. It flanks a courtyard outfitted with patio furniture meant to be sat upon.

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