A show that I have been meaning to write about for some time and one of the best exhibitions I have seen this year. Curated by the San Francisco MoMA, this display of Icelandic artist Olafur Eliasson's work, from 1993 to date, includes a bit of something for all tastes. Each room holds something new and the show ranges through an entire floor of the SFMoMA depicting the full Eliasson's breadth of creativity; work that seems to be that of several artists. "Encompassing sculpture, photography, and large-scale immersive installations — including a newly commissioned kaleidoscopic tunnel that envelops the Museum's steel truss bridge — these groundbreaking projects are intentionally simple in construction but thrilling to behold, sparking profound, visceral reactions designed to heighten one's experience of the everyday." (SFMoMA Exhibition Overview) Tessa DeCarlo, writer for The Brooklyn Rail, is correct in targeting the massive resources expended in creation of this exhibition. An industrial sized freezer contains a steel ribbed, watered and frozen BMW; Andy Goldsworthy meet societal symbol."It’s thrillingly unclear whether Eliasson’s achievement is to subvert our culture of spectacle or find new ways of exploiting it." (DeCarlo) Eliasson does not ask questions of our, of his, culture, of the resources used or how they are used. He rather sets them up in extraordinary ways, challenges our knowledge and expectations and sets up new systems by way of which we can begin to ask our own questions.
All in all, a fantastic show! In San Francisco through late February when it will be traveling to NY. Eliasson will be speaking at the SFMoMA on February 7.