Leaning Horizon (neon clear glass Argon, 2.1 m and 2.25 m), 2015
Cerith Wyn Evans

installation view Galerie Buchholz, Berlin 2015

210 x 1.2 x 1.2 cm
225 x 1.2 x 1.2 cm
Cerith Wyn Evans’s conceptual installations, sculptures, and films explore the boundaries of language, perception, and time. He interrogates what we see and know, or else what infuses particular objects with meaning. His favorite medium and heuristic devise of choice are sculptures of fluorescent lights, like Leaning Horizon (neon clear glass Argon, 2.1 m and 2.25 m), part of a series entitled “Inclined Horizon.” Here, two clear glass tubes filled with argon gas, placed at a semi-vertical angle against the wall on which they lean somewhat carelessly, emit a violet glow.
Responding to the writings of the artist and filmmaker Hito Steyerl and the art historian Erwin Panofsky, which offer historical accounts and speculations about the role of perspective in art, the leaning fluorescent tubes stand for the displaced horizon. Wyn Evans questions the reach and limits of human sight in multi-scalar representation of space when the human eye no longer serves as a reference point. He proposes that machine-aided mapping of space has eclipsed stable and consistent viewpoints, analogous to Leon Battista Alberti’s Renaissance ideas on pictorial perspective. Four-dimensional space shifts the attention to time as a variable. From the fixed perspective of a stationary eye, we have moved to GPS, Google Maps, drone photography, and other positioning technologies like 3D and virtual reality. The technologically enhanced gaze, which the artist defines as the “inhuman eye” of an abstract machine, disrupts the viewer's sense of constant, stable space-time coordinates.
Eva Wilson, "None, Not, Never" in Thyssen-Bornemisza Art Contemporary: The Commissions Book,, eds. Eva Ebersberger and Daniela Zyman (2020: Sternberg Press)
Eva Wilson and Daniela Zyman eds., Cerith Wyn Evans. The What If?... Scenario (after LG), Thyssen-Bornemisza Art Contemporary, Sternberg Press, 2013
Born in Llanelli, Wales, in 1958. Lives in London, UK.