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Liam Gillick: Progression Stream
Devised Production Structure
(The Doors to the Administration Building Have Been Left Open)

— November 2012

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Image © Liam Gillick

A Solo Project for Abu Dhabi Art 2012

7 - 10 November, 2012

UAE Pavilion And Manarat Al Saadiyat
Saadiyat Cultural District, Abu Dhabi, UAE 

Liam Gillick  will be taking part in Abu Dhabi Art, 2012 with a solo presentation of new work. Born, 1964 in England, Liam Gillick first came to international attention in the 1990s with a seminal body of work that promoted collaboration and questioned the relationship between the artist, the institution and the audience in the creation of meaning. This period of work is currently the subject of a comprehensive survey show at Hessel Museum of Art, CSS Bard.

Since then Gillick has become a prominent representative of the development of conceptual art and an influential artist.

Liam Gillick has created a major new work especially for Abu Dhabi Art, 2012. Titled 'Progression Stream, Devised Production Structure (The doors to the administration building have been left open)’, it is a work comprising three distinct elements: two large sculptures, one constructed using white powder-coated aluminium and coloured Plexiglas and the second, equal in size, constructed in coloured powder coated aluminium and a large wall-based vinyl text work in Arabic.

This ambitious work brings together the two dominant elements of Gillick's practice. His seductive, poetic use of language meets the formal rigour, precision and beauty of his minimal structures. The two large sculptures in aluminium and Plexiglas activate a play of light and reflection. The formal arrangement of colour and space employed in this work undoubtedly refers to the very particular light, colour and space of the Middle East while the openness, permeability and transparency of the second structure responds to the current era of cultural production and presentation in the region.

The 'text' element in the work continues the artist’s use of propositions or statements that have played a central role in his work since the 1980s. Writ large in Arabic on the walls behind the sculptures the text refers to a 'conversation' between the artist and the audience on how redundant sites of economic and cultural production still hold the potential for renewal wherever there is the openness to embrace new ideas and new possibilities. It seems fitting that the conversation be continued in the United Arab Emirates, itself a site for new cultural production and dissemination.

This is the artist’s first work in Arabic and to mark the event Gillick (well known for his writing and publishing) has designed a limited edition publication containing a new essay in both Arabic and English, presenting a compelling meditation upon contemporary abstraction.

Gillick recently designed the interior of the award-winning Wright restaurant for the Guggenheim, New York. He was selected to represent Germany for the 53rd Venice Biennale in 2009. The resulting work is in the permanent collection of the Guggenheim Bilbao.

 A critical reader titled Meaning Liam Gillick, was published by MIT Press in 2009. Public collections include: Government Art Collection, UK; Arts Council, UK; Tate, London; Museum of Modern Art, New York; Guggenheim Museum, New York and Bilbao; Hirshhorn Museum, Washington DC; Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago.

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